Sarwat Viqar

Sarwat Viqar
John Abbott College · Humanities, Philosophy and Religion

Doctor of Philosophy

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13
Publications
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Publications

Publications (13)
Article
Full-text available
Pakistan’s urban transformations are rarely discussed in relation to its changing political-economic conjunctures and new aesthetic sensibilities. Over the past decade, Pakistan’s leading metropolis, Karachi, has witnessed the impact of numerous projects that have sought to mould a new avatar backed by corporatist visions of a world-class city. The...
Article
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This article explores a range of discourses and practices that dominate the everyday lives of a range of social actors involved in the administration and organization of Lyari Town, one of the oldest settlements of Karachi. Underwritten by a narrative of historic marginalization as well as resistance, these discourses are linked to emerging socio-s...
Article
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Women’s public lives in Pakistan are often presented through tropes of oppression and restricted mobility. While women do struggle with all kinds of limitations that curtail their movement in the public sphere, they also negotiate their way and find their place in the public realm through various means that remain understudied in this context. In t...
Chapter
Within Karachi’s fast-transforming urban landscape, ordinary residents retain and sustain ways of occupying public space that defy categorizations of modern urban planning disciplines. As newly built skyscrapers, gated and securitized upper-middle-class enclaves, flyovers, highways and ‘signal-free’ corridors massively transform its geography, Kara...
Chapter
In this chapter I analyze the dialectic between the methods employed for ethnographic work and the urban context of Karachi that is undergoing urban transformations that echo larger changes in Asia. Privatization, informality and state fragmentation are key aspects of these processes within which urban ethnographers seek to make sense of everyday u...
Article
This entry discusses different aspects of how female space in Pakistan has been studied and conceptualized by scholars, paying particular attention to issues of female space and mobility in urban and rural areas; life cycle observances and sociality; sex work and public performance; empowerment discourses and strategies emphasizing women-only space...
Chapter
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In this chapter we explore the intersections of gender, mobility, and violence by analysing gender as a key mediator of mobility in two urban areas of Pakistan: Karachi and the twin cities of Rawalpindi-Islamabad (R-I). Karachi is the commercial hub of the country, Islamabad is the federal capital, and Rawalpindi is the headquarters of the all- pow...
Article
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This article foregrounds some of the challenges and risks involved in fieldwork in what is often perceived as a contested and violent political environment. In conducting an ethnography of public spaces in Karachi's inner city, I frequently encountered risky situations. These led to a critical examination of popular and normative discourses around...
Article
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In this paper, we discuss the politics of fieldwork in urban Pakistan and in doing so draw attention to the role of research assistants (RAs) in the production of knowledge. The discussion explores how the roles, reflexivity and positionality of our three Muslim female RAs adds depth to our understanding of fieldwork in a culturally and politically...

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