Rituals and the participation of urban form: informal and formal image making processes

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Abstract

The author through this paper hypothesis that the role urban form plays in the act of rituals contributes to an urban imagery that is embedded in various formal and informal socio-spatial processes and practises. By studying the yearly Karaga jatre (ritual) in Bangalore, India ethnographically and spatially, the paper describes the ritual's relevance to urban form, its role in sustaining collective memory and attachment, while conveying the process of urban image making.The Karaga ritual, as a visual and spatial narrative, acts as a powerful mnemonic for the city, where a rekindling of an affiliation between its people, its urban form, and memory occurs. Over a period of eleven days annually, public and semi-public spaces within the historic core transforms to accommodate over twenty thousand people creating a powerful urban imagery. By expanding on the urban performance of the ritual and linking it to an urban imaginary of the megacity of Bangalore, this paper explores the transformation and making of urban public space, and the various tactics involved in creating this temporary urban spectacle.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)129-138
Number of pages10
JournalCity, Culture and Society
Volume7
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2016

Keywords

  • Cultures
  • Public space
  • Rituals
  • Urban form
  • Visual narratives

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