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Urban Villager
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Urban Villager
Life in an Indian Satellite Town

First Edition
Critical Acclaim

Other Titles in:
Urban Planning | Urban Sociology

November 2013 | 290 pages | SAGE Publications Pvt. Ltd
Urban Villager is a superbly etched and finely detailed representation of the life of an ‘urban villager’ in a modern satellite town of India. It describes how Delhi, as a city, is growing radially, stretching its way into the rural fringes of Haryana and Uttar Pradesh that border the city to form the National Capital Region.

Through the microcosm of Greater Noida, a suburb of New Delhi, the author draws a portrait of life in a semi-urban town, where billion dollar homes and villages with no sewage system share the same pin code. Some farmers sell their land and try to cope with a new found prosperity; others refuse and break into agitations that make newspaper headlines. A builder destroys a wetland to make a township while the middle class in high rises frets about power and security. A few kilometres away, the Formula One event hosts international celebrities amidst bewildered villagers. Living here is being witness to the contradictions and ironies that occur when India is forced to co-exist with Bharat.

The author frequently draws parallels with similar kinds of urbanisation on the outskirts of other Indian metros. Across the country, the city gobbles up more and more of what was once the countryside—whether it is Sriperumbudur in Chennai, Belapur in Mumbai, Yelahanka on the outskirts of Bengaluru or Rajarhat New Town in Kolkata. No matter where you live in India, the story of this book could be the story you see in your city.
 
Preface
 
I: WHOSE LAND IS IT ANYWAY?
 
A New Town is Born
 
A Mutiny, A Martyr and Some Myths
 
Farmer, Farmer, Give Me Your Land
 
The Murky Tales of Noida Extension
 
Formula 1: Zipping through the Fields
 
II: THE IMPACT OF ACQUISITION
 
Poof! The Cash is Gone. Where’s My Gun?
 
The Cost of Building
 
No Home for the Bristled Grassbird
 
III: NEW OWNERS OF AN OLD LAND
 
Isles of Urbania
 
The Creation of an Education Bazaar
 
IV: THE SCHIZOPHRENIA OF THE PERI-URBAN TOWN
 
The Big, Fat Gujjar Wedding
 
Urban Villager
 
Art and the City
 
Greater Noida Heavens
 
V: GROWTH PANGS OF YOUNG TOWNS
 
The Complexities of Adolescence
 
Our Cities, Our Future
 
Annexures
 
Bibliography

In Urban Villager, the writer elucidates how the push for urbanization has led to as many challenges as the opportunities it has nurtured...[it] explores the dynamics of these challenges from her vantage as a resident of Greater Noida, a suburb of New Delhi.

The Financial Express, 1 December 2013

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ISBN: 9788132113096
£32.99