Nooreen Fatima

Grant Type

Dissertation Fieldwork Grant

Institutional Affiliation

Rutgers U.

Grant number

Gr. 10599

Approve Date

September 29, 2023

Project Title

Fatima, Nooreen (Rutgers U.) "Settling with the Settlement: Stories of Infrastructure Arrangements in Delhi's Resettlement Colonies"

“…When we moved here, we came with nothing…it was a barren land for as far as we could see…I slept on rags…the government left us here to die…today, I have built a house with my own money……” recalls Savita (34 years), who, along with her family of five, was relocated to Savda Ghevra resettlement colony post-2010 slum evictions during Delhi’s Common Wealth Games redevelopment process. Savita’s story exemplifies the experience and process of resettlement in Delhi and failed promises of planned housing and adequate infrastructure that the slums frequently lack. Focusing on what the new-materialist scholars call the “gathering of people and things” (Foucault, 1997; Barad, 2007; Lemke, 2015 & 2021), I explore how people build infrastructure in Savda Ghevra, using their learned and lived experience of living in marginality and limited availability of resources (people, space material and finance) as well as sensible predictability of future needs. Using visual ethnography as a method or what I call ‘EthnoGraphic’ stories, I explore the spatiality, materiality, sociality, and temporality of infrastructure in Delhi. Building on existing scholarship in urban anthropology on subaltern infrastructure, I highlight the gendered material and spatial realities of living in the peripheries and ‘settling with the settlement.’