02 juin 2008

history, community and freedom

Many residents agree that while they’re happy to get away from the decaying buildings and the violence, their biggest losses are the invisible support systems that made their lives livable—favors exchanged in a kind of social bartering, shared child care, extended family within shouting distance, church pastors who had been there for 35 years, friendship. This loss, too, is part of the Plan’s legacy.
- Two Tales of One City (Good Magazine, March/April 2008)

"So, these may be the last days for Dharavi. If so, much that is wretched will be lost. And, who knows, maybe something better will arise. Most of the slum-dwellers doubt this. And a few high-rise blocks, scattered across the slum, do not inspire great hope. Many are half-built and slowly mildewing. Lots of their residents, it is said, have already sold up illegally, and moved back to the slums, seeking things that town-planners cannot provide: a sense of history, community and freedom. Dharavi has these, as well as many horrible problems. It is organic and miraculously harmonious. It is intensely human. Unlike the random tower-blocks, Dharavi makes sense."
- A flourishing slum (The Economist, Dec 19 2007)

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