Nikhil Pandhi at the Dartmouth Society of Fellows

Feb. 19, 2024

Anthropology Doctoral candidate Nikhil Pandhi was awarded a prestigious Postdoctoral Fellowship at the Dartmouth Society of Fellows. The inter-disciplinary 3-year fellowship affords generous time and intellectual freedom for young scholars to develop their book projects and prepare themselves for academic careers.  At Dartmouth, Pandhi will also be an affiliate lecturer in the Department of Anthropology. He also intends to collaborate extensively with the Institute for Black Intellectual and Cultural Life, the Program in Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies and the Dartmouth South Asian Studies Collective.

Pandhi is currently finishing his doctoral dissertation Dying of Casteism, which puts ethnography, Hindi Dalit literature and anti-colonial caste studies in dialogue with Black and race studies to investigate the affective, embodied and aesthetic lives of caste violence in India.

At Dartmouth, Pandhi hopes to turn his current dissertation into a book manuscript and also initiate work on three concurrent scholarly projects. The first draws from his longstanding commitment to literature, translation and anthropology, which he honed at Princeton alongside his advisors Professors João Biehl and Laurence Ralph. Pandhi hopes to put together a special issue (and possibly an edited volume) on ‘radical literary anthropology’, while also finishing a new book of anti-caste literary translations from his fieldwork in India. The second, is a new ethnographic project about racialization and inequality in South Asia, which challenges existing accounts of ‘race’ (centered on global North contexts) and explores its ethnographic and epistemological relationships with caste, colour, skin and flesh in the global South. And the third, is a collaborative long-term ethnographic project on queer frequencies across genres such as ethnography, art, aesthetics and poetics.