The changing face of the Daryaganj Sunday Footpath Book Market in Delhi, with book historian, Kanupriya Dhingra.
This talk will engage with the spatiality of Daryaganj Sunday Patri Kitab Bazar (or Daryaganj Sunday Footpath Book Market), a local weekly market for used, rare, and pirated books that has been operating in Old Delhi, every Sunday, for the past fifty years.
To discuss its stop-go history, Kanupriya Dhingra will trace the bazar’s location on the streets over the years. She will examine its recent relocation to a rented, gated complex run by the civic authorities, in September 2019.
While this was not the first time that the bazar was declared an ‘encroachment’, it was one of the most influential events that led to re-spatialisation of the bazar, and by extension, the city, into a more governed space. Until 2019, despite various forms of regulation, serendipity has played a key role in the existence and functioning of this bazar – especially, in how books are found at this market. For this talk, Kanupriya will look at the permutations of order and chaos that continues to shape to this bazar.
Kanupriya Dhingra is a research scholar at the Centre for Cultural, Literary, and Postcolonial Studies, at SOAS, University of London. Supported by Felix Scholarship Fund, her current research engages with the parallel book markets of Old Delhi, and draws on multiple methodologies from book history, oral history, urban studies, anthropology, and postcolonial studies.
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