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The Ideal Polis

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Chapter Summary

Puttaparthi-Prashanti Nilayam is the case study of this chapter since it contains the most developed complex and multiple examples of the vision of the city as a sacred center, which was then replicated, elaborated, translated or mapped onto places elsewhere. The chapter then traces the development of the Puttaparthi area into an urban locus through the devotional and institutional regimes centered on Sathya Sai Baba. It focuses on the historical process of sacralizing a city or the urbanization of a holy site in South Asia since the late first millennium. In South India, in particular, a style of distributed urbanization featuring many small sites within "core" agricultural and commercial zones utilized central shrines surrounded often by quadri-lateral street patterns to organize social space.

Keywords: Puttaparthi-Prashanti Nilayam; Sathya Sai Baba; urbanization



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