In a continuous cycle of owning and disowning cultural and social practices, India has been returning to its constitutional roots of socialism after three decades of neo-liberalization. The post-socialist landscape has let to hyper-urbanization. From a forced market-driven economy to a rural India making its voice heard through droughts, unprecedented farmer suicides, and urban activism for regeneration of the "Essential Commodities Act", post-socialist India is rethinking its stance through new government policies of "Make in India", addressing the rurban production system of integrating rural output with urban technology.
Of the many post-apocalyptic scenarios, a virus was never one of the seriously taken theories, always being superseded by nuclear armament, terrorism, human-induced natural disasters. Despite massive measures taken in policy, design as well as social wisdom for other disasters, a global-scale health emergency has been one of the least addressed through time, despite the world grappling through bouts of widespread diseases. "If anything kills over 10 million people in the next few decades it's highly likely to be a highly-infectious virus rather than a war. Not missiles, microbes", (Bill Gates, 2015). As the priority of a pandemic-plan is realized globally, followed by failure of infrastructural, medical and social efforts, urban strategies in preventive measures are being re-thought of, as part of long-term resilience.
As a global crisis of COVID-19 changes perspectives and brings into light new failures of the post-socialist urban structure, rurban society is emerging as a breakthrough in stagnant urban issues, forging different meanings for different classes of the society – as a return to sustainable agricultural practices by migrant workers, a need for community bonding and support during difficult times for the middle-class working population, and a partial escape with farmhouses or villas for the business class that is fed up with over-concretization of the city.
The essay will take the form of an analyzed narrative, exploring the rurban-scape and its rapidly changing status, not only as a source of primary production, but also social requirements of the urban people. The context will be explored through a social portrayal based on different scales of architectural interventions and their performances in the lives of a rural community in Bengal.