[CSH-CPR Workshop] Lawless order? Regulations, illegalism, and security guardsmanship in Delhi (Damien Carrière)

[CSH-CPR Workshop] Lawless order? Regulations, illegalism, and security guardsmanship in Delhi (Damien Carrière)

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The Centre de Sciences Humaines (CSH) & Centre for Policy Research (CPR)

are pleased to invite you to an Online Urban Workshop (n°152)


Damien Carrière

(Lecturer, École Supérieure des Professions Immobilières-Paris, & researcher, ESPI (ESPI2R) lab.)


Lawless order? Regulations, illegalism, and security guardsmanship in Delhi


Tuesday, 18 October 2022, at 3:45 pm IST onwards

The session will be online via zoom. To register, kindly fill out this FORM
The session will also be live-streamed on the CPR Facebook page.
In case of any issues and for queries, please email: urbanization@cprindia.org

About the talk:

In major cities of South Asia, millions of security guards are deployed in front of every office, every shopping mall and on the streets of middle-class neighborhoods. Their numbers are said to exceed a quarter of a million in Delhi alone, but the legality of their work is rarely questioned. Based on my doctoral fieldwork, the article describes how the dominant classes in Delhi ignore or subvert laws and regulations — which are anyway unenforceable — and appropriate for themselves the control of public space. This goes alongside a rejection of police forces who are deemed too violent and too corrupt to serve their desires. Meanwhile, the Ministry of Skill development and Entrepreneurship taps on the presence of guards to fulfill its numeric targets of training imparted, even if the training they put in place contravene the regulations set in the Private Security Agency Regulations Act. These contradictions should not, however, be seen as an incoherence, but as a way to “make it work”. Through a discussion of Foucault’s concept of illegalism, I suggest that the functioning of security guardsmanship of Delhi hinges on an illegalism of the upper classes that facilitates their domination over the urbanscape of Delhi.

About Speaker:

Damien Carrière is currently a lecturer in the Paris’ École Supérieure des Professions Immobilières, and researcher in the ESPI Research in Real Estate (ESPI2R) laboratory. He is an associate researcher at the Centre for Social Sciences Studies on the African, American and Asian worlds (CESSMA ) and in the Institute for Strategic Research (IRSEM). He completed his Ph.D in Geography from the University of Minnesota and the University of Paris 7.

This is the hundred and fifty-two (152) in a series of Urban Workshops planned by the Centre de Sciences Humaines (CSH), New Delhi and Centre for Policy Research (CPR). These workshops seek to provoke public discussion on issues relating to the development of the city and try to address all its facets including its administration, culture, economy, society and politics. For further information, please contact: Stéphanie Tawa Lama of CSH at tawalama@ehess.frMukta Naik at mukta@cprindia.org or Marie-Hélène Zerah at marie-helene.zerah@ird.fr

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