Dr. Ritu Khanduri


Dr. Khanduri is a cultural anthropologist and historian. She is the author of Caricaturing culture in India: Cartoons and history in the modern world (Cambridge University Press, 2014). Her research, publications and teaching focus on media, Gandhi, science education,globalization and South Asia, specifically in the contexts of colonial and contemporary India, and the Indian Diaspora. Over the past few years, her research has advanced in three inter-related directions. The politics of shared media spaces is a central thread that runs through her current research on visual culture, which includes newspaper cartoons, comic books and Hindu images. The material cultural surrounding public perception of Gandhis politics and philosophy forms the next strand of Khanduris research. The final direction of her ongoing research interests includes a focus on gender and science. These projects are at varying stages of completion and have been published as journal articles and book chapters, and presented in conferences and invited talks. Trained as an anthropologist (University of Texas-Austin) and historian (Jawaharlal Nehru University), her publications address an interdisciplinary audience.

Writing and research fellowships from the Wenner-Gren Foundation, the Fulbright-Hays Foundation, Social Science Research Council and the Institute of Historical Research (University of London)-Mellon Foundation have supported various phases of Dr. Khanduris research. She is writing a short book on Gandhi and material culture titled, “Branding Gandhi” (under contract, Routledge), which is also a prelude to a larger book project on Gandhi. Her current long-term research project is an ethnography of women in science, which was recently awarded the Fulbright-Nehru Scholar Serial Grant (2013 and 2014).

An associate professor in the Anthropology Program, Dr. Khanduri integrates her research with teaching. Her five-course roster for the Fall and Spring semesters explores anthropological theory, visual culture, globalization and South Asia. In her undergraduate courses, Dr. Khanduri emphasizes collaborative team-based active learning and respectful peer relationships. Her graduate courses are designed to encourage students to develop their projects for publication and conference presentations. She is happy to advise and chair committees in cultural anthropology, and welcomes students queries to serve on MA and PhD committees in Fine Arts, Social Work and related disciplines in Social Science and Humanities.

Graduate course work in Dr. Khanduris anthropological theory and South Asia courses has resulted in three student publications namely, two book reviews and one research article–all in peer-reviewed journals.

In 2013, Dr. Khanduri was elected to serve on the American Anthropological Associations Committee for World Anthropologies (CWA). In 2010-11 the American Anthropological Association selected Dr. Khanduri for their Leadership Fellow award for junior faculty. Since September 2011, she has contributed a monthly column — J Drive, highlighting new research for the AAA publication, Anthropology News Online. She has served as an invited proposal reviewer for the NEH, Social Science Research Council (multiple years) and the Wenner Gren Foundation (current).

At UTA she has served on the Womens and Gender Studies Advisory Board and is faculty advisor to the Lambda Alpha, the UTA students chapter of the Anthropology Honors Society.

Dr. Khanduris service to the profession, UTA and the anthropology program, as well as her public outreach draws on her research and teaching expertise. She has contributed to community school events, World Affairs Councils the Portrait of India program, and Dr. Seriffs NEH funded project on immigration in Texas. She believes public engagement with anthropology can enrich the discipline as well as enhance public awareness of cultural issues.

In an earlier incarnation, as an undergraduate student in Delhi University, Dr. Khanduri received three Sahitya Kala Parishad youth festival awards for painting and poster design. Her favorite artists include Manjula Padmanabhan, Shahzia Sikander (http://www.shahziasikander.com/bio.html) and Nina Paley, among others.

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