Kamala Visweswaran

Associate FacultyPh.D., Stanford University

Associate Professor
Kamala Visweswaran



Research interests:
Feminist theory and ethnography, gender and nationalism, comparative feminist movements, South Asian social movements, ethnic and political conflict, human rights, colonial law, critical race theory, South Asian literatures, Subaltern Studies, Transnational and Diaspora studies. Conducted research in Tamil Nadu and Gujarat, India.
She is the author of Fictions of Feminist Ethnography (1994), Uncommon Cultures (Duke, forthcoming) and Perspectives on South Asia (Blackwell, forthcoming). She is currently working on two book manuscripts: and "A Thousand Genocides Now: Gujarat in the Modern Imaginary of Violence" and "Histories of Rights, Histories of Law." She served as North American Editor of the journal Cultural Dynamics from 2000-05, and continues to serve on the editorial board of the Feminist journal Meridians .


2005 South Asia Research Fellowship, Institute of International and Regional Studies, Princeton University
2001-2 Bunting Fellowship, Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, Harvard University
2000 Dean's Fellow, University of Texas, Austin
1996-7 Mellon Postdoctoral Fellowship, Sawyer Seminar Program, Chicago Humanities Institute, University of Chicago
1995-6 American Institute of Indian Studies, Senior Research Fellowship
1994-5 CIES Fulbright, Senior Research Fellowship

Recent Publications:

2004 "Affective States: Rethinking Culture as a Site of South Asian Human Rights Work" HUMAN RIGHTS QUARTERLY. 26(2):483-511.

2004 Introduction: Engendering Violence: Boundaries, Histories and the Everyday. Special Issue on Gendered Violence in South Asia: Nation and Community in the Postcolonial Present (With Sukhanya Banerjee, Angana Chatterji, Lubna Chaudhury, Manali Desai, and Saadia Toor) CULTURAL DYNAMICS. Vol 16 (2/3):125 -39.

2003 "The Interventions of Culture: Claude Levi-Strauss and the Internationalization of the Modern Concept of Race" in Robert Bernasconi (ed). Race and Racism in Continental Philosophy. London: Blackwell.

2002 Introduction to "Feminist Perspectives on 9/11" (with Amrita Basu, Paula Giddings, Inderpal Grewal) in MERIDIANS: FEMINISM,RACE, TRANSNATIONALISM. Vol 2, no. 2, March 2002.

2001 "An Idea of Race, A Philosophy of Hierarchy: Louis Dumont's Homo Hierarchicus" in Robert Bernasconi (ed). Race: Blackwell Readings in Continental Philosophy. London: Blackwell. pp.205-17.


WGS 340 • Natlism & Gender In S Asia

47335 • Spring 2013
Meets MW 330pm-500pm SAC 5.102
(also listed as ANS 361, ANT 324L)

This course asks why nationalist movements so oftentake reform of women's roles as central to their politicalprojects. By focusing on gender, the course explores theconsequences of Partition for the subcontinent, andexamines the cases of India, Pakistan, Bangladesh,Afghanistan, and Sri Lanka to understand what roleHinduism, Islam and Buddhism have played in thegenesis of nationalist ideologies and ethnic conflict. Thecourse is interdisciplinary and draws upon commercialand independent cinema, documentary film, novels andmemoirs, as well as contemporary historiography andsocial science to analyze South Asian nationalistmovements.

WGS 340 • Nationalism & Gender In S Asia

48738 • Fall 2009
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm ART 1.120
(also listed as ANS 361, ANT 324L)


Curriculum Vitae

Profile Pages

External Links

  • Center for Women's and Gender Studies

    University of Texas at Austin
    Burdine Hall 536
    2505 University Avenue, A4900
    Austin, Texas 78712