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South Asian Studies 196:

Work and Religion in Modern South Asia


Parimal G. Patil and Shankar Ramaswami

Meetings: Spring 2014, MW12-1pm

1 Bow Street, Room 330


Course Description

This course will explore the everyday lives, politics, and theologies of working-class persons in modern South Asia.  The course will examine contemporary debates on globalization, development, and precarity; workers’ experiences of factory work, informality, and agitations; and workers’ religious practices and theological visions.  Core concerns of the course will include inquiries into the appropriate categories for understanding workers’ lives and visions, and the possibilities for autonomous, nonviolent politics among working-class people in South Asia.  The course will draw upon a range of sources, including ethnographies, histories, religious studies, epics, novels, and Hindi cinema.  Class meetings will involve video conversations with scholars and activists based in South Asia.