Why Loiter?: Women and Risk on Mumbai Streets


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Presenting an original take on women's safety in the cities of twenty-first century India, Why Loiter? maps the exclusions and negotiations that women from different classes and communities encounter in the nation's urban public spaces.

Basing this book on more than three years of research in Mumbai, Shilpa Phadke, Sameera Khan and Shilpa Ranade argue that though women's access to urban public space has increased, they still do not have an equal claim to public space in the city. And they raise the question: can women's access to public space be viewed in isolation from that of other marginal groups?

Going beyond the problem of the real and implied risks associated with women's presence in public, they draw from feminist theory to argue that only by celebrating loitering"a radical act for most Indian women"can a truly equal, global city be created.

Written in a lively prose and filled with surprising insight into women's experience of public spaces. Why Loiter sets out a manifesto for building an inclusive society where all people will have an equal right to their city's public spaces.

Published: 2011
Pages: 280
Format: Paperback