The thesis brings us to the city of Lucknow, the capital of Uttar Pradesh in North India and it is based on a six month intensive fieldwork. It solves the riddle of why this city, lying at the heart of an area stricken at times by communal violence, has throughout its history always remained peaceful. It focuses particularly on the period since the 1990s which has been marked by the emergence of the Hindu nationalists and communal unrest. The ways in which social cohesion in the city is produced are investigated and it is shown how the resulting balanced relationships between the Hindu and Muslim population prevent the occurrence of communal violence. The argument is a composite one and it connects several realms - the discursive, the social and the economic. It is argued that at the heart of the “peaceful” nature of Lucknow is a particular blend of local past as it is imagined by the city’s inhabitants and of networks of economic dependency, which cut across the boundaries of class, caste, gender, religion and locality. These economic networks of interdependency integrate a great number of the Lucknow`s population and in result neutralize the polarizing strategies of the political leaders and lessen the chances of the occurrence of the communal tension. These networks are produced by the local embroidery industry which is well-known under the name Chikan and which gives employment to about twenty percent of the city’s population. Through the exploration of this industry, of the production process and the artisans and businessmen involved in it, the functioning of the networks is explained. Further these economic and social networks and the imagined local past are set within a greater framework of the experience of modernity in urban India. The focus is turned to the middle-class lifeworld, glocal trends, commodity consumption, media and particularly Bollywood cinema as well as to the representations and meanings of Chikan and the influence of these imaginaries on the networks which sustain the peaceful relationships.