Introduction: Delhi: New writings on the megacity

Tickell, Alex and Ranasinha, Ruvani (2020). Introduction: Delhi: New writings on the megacity. In: Tickell, Alex and Ruvani, Ranasinha eds. Delhi: New Literatures of the Megacity. Abingdon: Routledge, pp. 3–13.



In the colonial paradigm, the city features as a place of wary governance, concealed violence and suppressed terror. Indeed, if cities in the Global North have often been regarded historically as structured and ordered signs of civility and modernity, the cradles of liberal democracy and a civic culture, the cities of the subcontinent have more often been relegated to the other end of a developmental scale and dismissed as metropolises of “mismanagement”, “excess” and “overpopulation. Recent genealogy is traced for the new writings on the megacity in the issue: one that shadows and responds to discussions of the city of the Global South in geography, sociology and the connected emergent discipline of “urbanism”. Cultural production is a vital part of imagining the city and has the potential to influence the understanding of urban reality and reveal cities’ complex structures, hierarchies of power, racialized and classed cartographies and exclusive zoning.

Plain Language Summary

This scholarly introduction to the edited collection of the same title outlines key themes and theoretical reference points and explains the collection's critical rationale.

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