The Delhi Urban Platform and the Goethe-Institut invite you to an open discussion-
Ecology of Fragments
6:00 P.M., 15th July 2010
Max Mueller Bhavan
3, Kasturba Gandhi Marg
Delhi- 110 001
The ecology of the city is changing rapidly in complex ways. It is impossible to capture this moment completely. In nature, as in human societies, altering any part of the ecology of an interdependent networked relationship impacts every other part in the system. In this process, many precious elements can ‘disappear,’ and become absent. They are apparent to us only as a ‘lack,’ or absence and gradually, over time. While nature evolves through a constant struggle and adaptation, with each micro niche being fragile and sustainable, there is no single predicted meta outcome, only a constant change. On the other hand, the change in our cities seems to be driven through imaginations which are fixed and pre-decided by capital and social power. Nothing else which could be termed human seems to matter anymore.
‘Absences,’ can be fragmented and dispersed, and not always visible. They are also markers of the forces behind the change. For example, has the concretisation of every green patch, lead to the disappearance of the house sparrow, or has the conservation of monuments meant that the city has no street performers any more? Will the river once cleaned, kill itself, or is the cleaner city leading more marginalized lives? Maybe it is time we think of ‘ecology’ not only in terms of ‘functionality’ (is a tree more useful than a building) and ‘aesthetics,’ (is a tree more beautiful than a building), but in terms of dominance and loss. Maybe this is what this moment is all about.
Ravi Agarwal: An Ecology of Fragments
Sohail Hashmi: Traditional water systems of Delhi
Anand Vivek Taneja: Monuments as living entities
Shashi Pandit: Wastepickers and new marginalisations in privatisation.
Manoj Mishra: The river as an eco-system, not merely a water channel.
(Chaired and moderated by Ravi Agarwal)