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Sexism and the City

Most cities were designed around men and their work. It's time for that to change.

by Ankita Rao
15 May 2017, 5:22pm

I've lived in several cities across the world in my adult life and could never quite pinpoint why I felt safer in places like Mumbai and New York than Delhi and DC.

Some of this appears in the statistics—Delhi has more reported violence against women than Mumbai, and DC has more violent crime than New York. And some is experience—in DC I was followed down quiet roads, exposed to a guy's genitalia on a sidewalk in broad daylight. In Delhi, I was contemplating whether or not to take an Uber one night, and the next day a woman accused her driver of rape.

There was a palpable discomfort to navigating these metropolises and trying to figure out where I fit in their infrastructure. And I've learned since that my instinct was grounded in a long history of urban planning, and how most cities never accounted for women in their design.

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