Position Pieces – New Cultural Forms: Probing the City

Pablo Mukherjee – ‘Indian Ocean Crime Fiction’

Ruvani Ranasinha – ‘Migrant Lives’

Lakshmi Menon – ‘University Infrastructures’

Claudia Gastrow – ‘Tools of Segregation in Luanda’

In the position pieces that concluded the Johannesburg Planned Violence workshops, two Working Group members, Ruvani Ranasinha and Pablo Mukherjee, offer examples of Planned Violence from their recent research, and are joined by Lakshmi Menon, who was involved in the organisation of the Planned Violence workshop in Delhi, and Claudia Gastrow, who is based in Johannesburg. First, Mukherjee builds a theory of uneven literary development through the example of detective fiction coming out of the contrasting spaces of London and Calcutta at the beginning of the twentieth century, whilst Ranasinha asks whether literary fiction can diagnose the kinds of violence and discrimination experienced by migrants living and writing in New York. Menon then explores the historical connections and increasingly important relationship between the space of the university campus and different forms of protest and resistance, before Gastrow concludes with a redeployment of AbdouMaliq Simone’s notion of ‘people as infrastructure’ in the specifically urban context of Luanda.


(From the third Planned Violence Workshop, ‘Forensic Infrastructure: Building the Global South’, held in Johannesburg in March/April 2015)

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