Grant TypeDissertation Fieldwork Grant
Institutional AffiliationPennsylvania, U. of
Grant numberGr. 9821
Approve DateApril 29, 2019
Project TitleJonnalagadda, Indivar (Pennsylvania, U. of) "Securing Land, Legitimacy, and Life: Informal Land Rights and Markets in Hyderabad, India"
INDIVAR JONNALAGADDA, then a graduate student at University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, received funding in April 2019 to aid research on ‘Securing Land, Legitimacy, and Life: Informal Land Rights and Markets in Hyderabad, India,’ supervised by Dr. Nikhil Anand. This dissertation project, retitled ‘Conditional Land Rights and Subaltern Citizenship in Hyderabad, India,’ examines the intersecting politics of citizenship and property for marginalized groups in urban India. Since April 2020, the grantee has pursued and expanded four broad research tracks: land rights; informal markets; politics of regularization; and slum governance. The findings present the slum as a dynamic site for negotiating the meaning of legality and contesting the normative distribution of urban resources. By focusing on property relations beyond the law, and exchanges of property beyond formal real estate markets, this study shows the strategic political processes generated in response to legal regimes of development which are drained of any substantive progressive potential. The research has relevance for the rich literature on the politics of citizenship among marginalized groups, on law and property relations, and on urban governance. It builds on the lived experiences of subaltern citizens and their everyday encounters with obstacles to flourishing and economic advancement, to argue that citizenship claims for the poor are often articulated as property/possessory claims. This has important implications for how development is pursued in populist democracies, and for what kinds of urban politics we can anticipate in response to transformations sparked by climate change.