I work on the social history of agrarian South India in the 19th and 20th centuries. My work tackles the process of agrarian expansion and the concomitant effects of the gendered forging and consolidation of “dominant” caste identity in the dry ecological regions of the Coimbatore district in western Tamil Nadu. I am also interested in exploring how agrarian actors envision multiple often non-agrarian futures at a time of widespread agrarian and environmental crisis.
Before coming to Stanford my MPhil thesis at the University of Hong Kong explored cattle-developmentalism in twentieth century India in which I examined the shared history of sacred and secular framing of India’s cattle economy. My wider interests include the history of capitalism, science, and environment in modern India. Outside academic work, I translate non-fiction from English to Tamil.