Dr. Devyani GuptaColonial empire, South Asia, global histories of modern science, social histories of commodity trade, archives
As part of the “Global History” project, Devayani will be researching “Postal Networks of India and the Global British Empire, c. 1860-1920”. This project seeks to provide new insights into our understanding of imperialism and colonialism, transnational structures and global networks, and multicultural politics and its hybridity.
The centrality of networks of communication and exchange, to state building and empire in British India, was the focus of her doctoral dissertation, which was submitted for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy at the University of Cambridge (2016). Prior to that, Devyani completed an MPhil in Modern Indian History from the University of Delhi (2011). She was also teaching an undergraduate course on the Cultural History of Modern India at the University of Delhi from 2008-09.
Her research emphasises the importance of inter-imperial networks and throws light on entangled histories of communication, knowledge-transmission and commodity exchange. It prioritises the writing of new social histories, wherein study of everyday structures of rule and governance, extraction and organisation help reconstruct the lived experiences of the past.
Devyani’s research interests include: princely states, histories of publishing, textbooks, almanacs and directories, histories of spatiality and time-keeping, social histories of opium, salt and quinine, labour histories, global history, and histories of archives and record-keeping.