Topic-icon Sohini Chattopadhyay Intro

4 years 3 months ago #236 by Chatto S
Sohini Chattopadhyay Intro was created by Chatto S
Hi all!

I am Sohini Chattopadhyay, a doctoral candidate in History from Columbia University.

I focus on South Asian urban history (Calcutta and Bombay, c. 1896 - 1960) to study the technologies of death disposals of the bodies of the poor, unclaimed and the anonymous. My project connects history of dissection of unclaimed bodies with the history of municipalities and philanthropic organizations. I argue that the juridical and social administration of death of the poor following a massive epidemic of bubonic plague (1896 - 1900) reconstituted the social markers of labor, caste, community, and gender upon dead bodies and death rituals. Instead, new scientific practices and rituals re-articulated death the social difference of death around the interface of productivity, waste, and toxicity. Together, my dissertation will demonstrate that a study of material practices of death opens up a way to explore how colonialism transformed dead bodies into property and value, and raised questions around what is human and what is material in death.

My project will hugely benefit from the discussions on the philosophical limits of death, body, human and material. I am looking forward to all the discussions!


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