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#AanaJaana [#ComingGoing]: Curating gendered digital lives in Delhi's urban peripheries

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This paper presents a gendered perspective of Delhi’s urban future produced and curated by young women living in slum resettlement colonies in the city’s edge. Using the metaphor of #aanajaana [#ComingGoing] as a paradigm for postcolonial urbanism, this paper argues that their everyday mobility across the home and the city reflect the paradox of belonging and exclusion in a digital urban age. The paper captures the ambiguities and paradoxes of their lives – on the one hand living as second generation rural migrants forcefully evicted from the city slums in the 2000s and resettled in the peripheries. On the other hand, as millennials with increased access to mobile and communication technologies, these women are also riding the digital urban age with promises of their inclusion in the future city. Using a digital and participatory methodology of WhatsApp diary entries of multimedia content (audio recordings, photographs, videos and text messages by women), conversations between the women and researchers as well as observations of the dynamics within the WhatsApp group over a period of 6 months, I suggest that #AanaJaana highlights the inherent slow violence of living between physical and digital exclusions from the city. By digitally and visually curating women’s everyday stories, #aanajaana also turned into a hip-hop song written and performed by these women that drew attention to the attritional and invisible violence of their lives.

This talk is part of the Department of Geography - main Departmental seminar series series.

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