Department of Asian Studies
Department of Asian Studies

Seminar Series: Projit Bihari Mukharji on "Somatonational: The National Body and its Fragments, India c. 1920-1966"

Thu, May 3, 2018 | Meyerson Conference Room (WCH 4.118), UT Austin Campus

3:30 PM - 5:00 PM

Seminar Series: Projit Bihari Mukharji on


Projit Bihari Mukharji, University of Pennsylvania, will speak on "Somatonational: The National Body and its Fragments, India c. 1920-1966" as part of the Spring South Asia Seminar Series.

Since the 1920s Mendellian genetics came to play an important role in the scientific study of human populations in the subcontinent. It became the preferred way in which to access their histories and identities. This development in turn converted human bodies into a new kind of archive that carried within it valuable information about the nation and its pasts. Like any other archive, it immediately raised questions of ownership and access. Who owned the information? Who had the right to access it? Under what conditions was such access permissible? Put differently, whose bodies were tested? Did they willingly allow such testing? How was the information extracted from these body-archives used? How did such uses in turn impact the lives and identities of those from whose bodies the information had been extracted? 

The seminar series theme is "Musth: Somatic States in South Asia," convened by Martha Ann Selby, Department of Asian Studies. A light reception will precede the event at 3pm.

This talk is FREE! and open to the public.

Sponsored by: South Asia Institute

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