chapter  5
28 Pages

Economic life, aspirations and social mobility

Drawing on information collected in the course of fieldwork in Park Circus, the present chapter attempts to build up such a contextualised 115description of the economic and educational status of Muslims of the neighbourhood. The first section of this chapter presents a brief profile of their economic life and describes the principal occupations and types of employment the majority of them currently find themselves in. The second section dwells on the emerging aspirations of city-dwelling Muslims in contemporary India, and explores the theme of education, which emerges as the principal site around which desires for a 'better life' get structured. The chapter also focuses on the economic life of ordinary Muslims in the Park Circus neighbourhood and attempts to provide a sketch of the ways in which they negotiate the multiple aspects of urbanity, community and marginality in the course of their everyday life within a stigmatised urban space.