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HERA-SINGLE Workshop in Delhi

Oct 09, 2015

The workshop “Solo-cities: Representations of the ‘Single’ in Urban Spaces” took place in New Delhi from October 6-8. It was part of the HERA project 'SINGLE', coordinated by HCTS Professor Christiane Brosius, and organised in conjunction with the Max Mueller Bhavan/Goethe Institut New Delhi.

As cultural contact zones, cities throughout Asia are shaping and being shaped by global, regional and national flows that are implicated in the unravelling of ‘traditional’ social contracts. New forms of economic production, migration, and a growing leisure and consumer society, for example, are said to erode institutions such as ‘the family’. The ‘single’ woman has come to signify cultural change, demanding recognition and access to the city, as well as re-versioning what concepts such as ‘tradition’ and ‘modernity’ mean. Singleness can stem from various acts of stepping outside the ‘family’. The idea of singleness is increasingly visible within the media landscape that acts not only as a mirror but as a catalyst for its emergence.

This international workshop sought to interrogate this contested notion of singleness in the city, focusing on Delhi and Shanghai. Through presentations, panel discussions, performance and film screenings, it highlighted that gendered imaginaries of emancipation are contested in the light of a variety of cultural practices that impact the multiple life-worlds of women and cities that invite, produce and restrict singleness.

The workshop was part of the HERA (Humanities in the European Research Area) funded project 'SINGLE'. It was organised in conjunction with the Max Mueller Bhavan/Goethe Institut New Delhi, where it also took place. Findings from the HERA project were presented as well as ongoing collaboration with artists and academic colleagues from Shanghai/ Hong Kong. The international SINGLE project is headed by Prof. Christiane Brosius, Chair of Visual and Media Anthropology in Heidelberg, Dr. Melissa Butcher (London), Prof. Jeroen de Kloet (Amsterdam), and coordinated by Laila Abu-Er-Rub.

Visit the workshop homepage for detailed information


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