The rise of the modern commercial political-economic system is influencing rural to urban migration in addition to urban morphology. Slum settlements are one of the major results of rapid and often unregulated rural to urban migration. Slum settlements create a major problem for developing cities. The slum settlements do not fit the leadership’s vision for a modern city, one that can be marketed to outside businesses and organizations for investment. As a result they are often seen as a nuisance by the leadership and targeted for destruction, especially when the land of the slum is valuable. The process of slum removal is therefore a political process. This is especially relevant in India, where slums are growing at an almost unimaginable rate. The Delhi Development Agency views slums as the type of settlement that negatively impacts their vision of creating a “world class city.” In the Kathputli colony, a slum settlement in Delhi, development has been occurring for almost 50 years as the region is a vibrant mix of local production and circus performers. In recent years, as Delhi develops outward, the Delhi Development Agency has looked to redevelop Kathputli. This redevelopment is being presented as an improvement for the residents of the slum, but in interviews with the residents, they are skeptical of the end result. The goal of this paper is to employ Kathputli as a case study to view the life cycle of a typical slum community, using Wolfel, Richmond and Grazaitis’ (2017) framework of urban development to demonstrate how the complexity of slum development, slum dynamics and slum destruction. As more people continue to migrate to a city, understanding the dynamics of slum communities becomes more essential if one is to successfully operate in a large urban area

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