ABSTRACT

This book then is about twentieth-and twenty-fi rst-century formations and fi ctions of the postcolonial city and the constitution of new subjects within it. It offers a reading of both historical and contemporary debates on urbanism through the fi lter of postcolonial fi ctions and the cultural fi elds surrounding them. In particular, the book presents a representational history of London, Nairobi and Bombay in the twentieth and twenty-fi rst centuries and engages three key theoretical frameworks-the city within postcolonial theory and culture (its troubled salience in the construction of postcolonial public spheres and identities, from local, rural, ethnic/ ”tribal” and regional, to “national”, cosmopolitan and transnational subjects/positions); postcolonial fi ctions as constituting a new world literary space and as a site of articulation of contending narratives of urban space, global culture and postcolonial development; and postcolonial feminist citizenship as a universal political project challenging current neo-liberal and post-neo-liberal contractions and eviscerations of public spaces and rights. The Postcolonial City and Its Subjects weaves together these material and discursive threads in order to present an analysis and theory of the representational space of the postcolonial city and its subjects.1