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A visceral approach that attends to intimate, playful engagements with a critical “resource” like water can have nontrivial implications for resource politics. The ethnographic focus here is on the Grand Venice, a water-themed shopping and business complex located in the semiarid scrublands outside New Delhi, which promised investors gondola rides, a mermaid show, and India’s first aquarium. Tucked into the confection of a building façade meant to conjure the Doge’s Palace, these enticements raise the question of whether there might be room for embodiment, play, and aesthetics in a sea of utilitarian treatments of water. As attention turns to the...

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