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Urban Communication Reader IV

Cities as Communicative Change Agents

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Edited By erin daina mcclellan, Yongjun Shin and Curry Chandler

Today, the world is facing climate change, wealth inequality, housing crises, food shortages, mass migration, and now a global health pandemic. Cities are at the heart of both these problems and their solutions. Urban communication scholars are well-poised to examine the change initiatives that are both caused and inspired by such complex problems. This volume provides a collection of urban communication research focused on how examining change through the lens of communication provides unique processual understandings of cities as dynamic sites formed through the interplay between concrete cases and conceptual ideas. The first section, Change through Institutional Intervention, addresses how diverse societal institutions—including policy, regulation, planning, and voluntary arts—interplay with changes in our urban communities. The second section, Change in Place and through Space, explores various ways in which spaces and places are able to transform through communicative practice, specifically focusing on how space and place provide unique frames for communicating change and influencing interaction in cities. The third section, Change through Participation and Engagement, collectively draws attention to the ways that public participation and engagement are utilized in cities in ways that enhance the communication both within and about them, focusing specifically on how this happens globally in teaching and learning environments, community planning partnerships, industrial site redevelopment projects, and approaches to food sovereignty in urban agricultural initiatives.
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7. Gentrification of Lavale: Changing Spatiality and the Making of a Rural-Urban Complex: SHUBHDA ARORA, INDIAN INSTITUTE OF MANAGEMENT, LUCKNOW, INDIA, JUHI JOTWANI, FOUNDATION FOR LIBERAL AND MANAGEMENT EDUCATION (FLAME) UNIVERSITY, INDIA & PRACHITI MANE, FOUNDATION FOR LIBERAL AND MANAGEMENT EDUCATION (FLAME) UNIVERSITY, INDIA

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7. Gentrification of Lavale: Changing Spatiality and the Making of a Rural-Urban Complex

SHUBHDA ARORA, JUHI JOTWANI & PRACHITI MANE

Abstract:

Lavale, a village in Mulshi Taluka, is a biodiverse and ecologically sensitive region situated along the western ghats of India. The village is currently in a state of transition, where rural farming communities and hyper-capitalist establishments coexist and have led to an ecosystem that is continuously in flux. This chapter explores local narratives of different communities in Lavale, who experience this spatiality on a daily basis to understand changing discourses on development and environment. Lavale exists in an in-betweenness, where different communities interact with each other as well as with their changing environment in myriad ways. Since the ownership of land and property is dependent on community and caste affiliations, Lavale is extremely stratified and ghettoized. Given this context, this chapter discusses three broad themes, (a) spatial boundaries and access; (b) rural-urban complex; and (c) employment and development discourses. This qualitative study examines the experiences of different local communities and their processes of acceptance, adoption, assimilation, rejection, resistance, or indifference to the changing ecology and urbanization of the area. Therefore, this study explores intersectionalities and contributes to urban sociology and communication studies.

Keywords: gentrification, rural-urban complex, hybrid spatiality, urbanization, Western Ghats of India, development discourses, local ecology, ghettoisation

Introduction

Spatiality is positioned at the center of the discipline and practice of geography, unifying a diverse...

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