Survival Infrastructures under COVID19 in India

This is the fourth podcast in the UCL Institute of Advanced Studies series ‘Life in the Time of Coronavirus’ in which specialists from arts, humanities and social sciences, think about the questions that the virus poses to our ways of life, of being and self understanding, both now and in the past. In this contribution Ayona Datta, Professor of Human Geography, thinks about survival infrastructures, and their collapse or dysfunctionality in the context of the mass exodus and precarity of migrant workers, forced to forsake the city because of India’s lockdown.

What comes into focus in her description is not only the failure of the city to support its vulnerable workers, but the way that the survival of the city depends on the bodies it betrays.