Hawkers and The Production of Space in Everyday Kolkata
A much-overlooked aspect of urbanism is the complex tapestry of how public spaces are appropriated by micro-businesses, and the ways this affects city life. In this engrossing little paperback, Hamburg-based architectural theorist Christopher Dell looks at the vibrant community of hawkers on the streets of Kolkata (formerly known as Calcutta). “Modernism has passed the concept of determined planning, and postmodernism has passed the concept of chaotic fragmentation down to us,” writes Dell. “Can’t we try to learn from hawking how to enable the urban to perform better?” Charming color photos feature food vendors, open-air restaurants and enterprises like laundries and hairdressers, and the temporary and permanent sidewalk structures that house them.
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