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Still from Shilpa Phadke’s TEDxSTXAVIERSMUMBAI talk ‘Why Loiter’
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Video Page: Why Loiter? | Shilpa Phadke | TEDxStXaviersMumbai

Shilpa Phadke, one of the co-authors of the acclaimed book Why Loiter? Women and Risk on Mumbai Streets speaks about how public spaces are gendered and how safety seems to be an ultimate goal when, in fact, it is a “useless goal”. She reveals how this goal is restrictive and is conditional upon women having to have a purpose or a reason to be in public spaces, and stresses on the need to find alternative narratives to safety. Shilpa urges us to “loiter” as one of the ways of reclaiming public spaces and defying gendered assumptions of how women should behave. And best of all, she reminds us that we have the right to choose to take risks and the responsibility to respect difference so that we can re-imagine public spaces, feel a sense of belongingness in them, and have them belong to everyone.

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