Majority lower-income and working-class districts in the Global South have long relied on an intricate interweaving of diverse practices. This has been complemented by strategic engagements with the ambiguities inherent in governing the dispositions of land and municipal services. These processes of majority-inflected urbanization are being substantially constrained both by the restructuring of urban rule and economy and by the exigencies of climate change. At the same time, there are often undue expectations that grassroots movements will be critical drivers of urban transformations capable of enduring climate change. But the collective actions of many low-income districts are seemingly indifferent to such expectations. Both the endurance of long-honed political practices and their substantive adjustments are explored here in order to revisit fundamental questions about how to generate lives worth living without valorization of the human.