Stigma, Precarity, and the Everyday Life of Outcaste Labor

Anupama Rao

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What forms of critical thought and cultural production are enabled by intersections between stigmatized life and the social experience of labor in twentieth-century Bombay? In her latest project, Barnard College Associate Professor of History Anupama Rao critically engages traditional approaches to labor, examining how the practices of precarious workers, such as India’s Dalits, impact the ways in which citizenship and emancipation are constituted outside recognizable domains of “the political.” Rao’s research and teaching interests include the history of anti-colonialism, gender and sexuality studies, caste and race, historical anthropology, social theory, and colonial genealogies of human rights and humanitarianism. Her previous book, The Caste Question, focuses on the role of anti-caste thought in producing alternative genealogies of political subject-formation.