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The conference on Karachi in 2013 was the first event arranged by a newly-created body, The Karachi Conference Foundation, designed to deliberate on all aspects of the citys life. This book, bringing together the papers presented at the Conference, represents a landmark in scholarship on the mega-city and its issues. It is always a matter of great interest to see how certain societies have developed, starting out as Stone Age sites and flourishing as throbbing urban centres. While not every stage of this process is always documented, the records of remnants collected often help in painting a portrait that provides insights into this transformation. This is what Studies on Karachi does. Lay readers and scholars in a range of different disciplines with an interest in how a sleepy settlement in the late medieval period developed into a mega-city will find this book particularly useful. What emerges from the various chapters is the depiction of a city that, despite its vibrancy, is afflicted with numerous problems, ranging from poor planning to colossal mismanagement. Women, marginalized communities, neglected areas, issues of planning and development, and the history, and the anthropology of Karachi are all particular foci of attention throughout the book.
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Sabiah Askari received a Masters degree in English from the University of Oxford, and has also trained as an English language teacher, specializing in teaching child-centred classrooms. She worked for the Oxford University Press, Pakistan, for several years, which entailed taking a book from the manuscript stage to the final published product. At the time of her resignation, she was in charge of Educational Publishing, while continuing to work on academic books. Since she left the Press, Ms Askari has been working as a freelance editor on a wide variety of projects, ranging from books to academic journals, as well as on corporate reports. The Karachi Conference Foundation was established in the year 2011 to provide a forum for discussions on Karachis past, present and future. KCF has since then organized several events around the archaeology, history, culture, built environment, social issues and urban development of the megapolis of Karachi. KCFs main event is the annual Karachi Conference. (www.karachiconference.com)
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