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The Sovereignty of an Audacious Raconteur in Colonial India

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Friday, October 11, 2019
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9:30 am - 11:00 am
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Leela Prasad
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Join the Franklin Humanities Institute for its Friday morning series, tgiFHI! tgiFHI gives Duke faculty in the humanities, interpretative social sciences and arts the opportunity to present on their current research to interlocutors in their fields. A light breakfast will be served at 9am.

About the presentation:

Can a subject be sovereign in a hegemony? Can creativity be reined in by forces of empire? In this talk, based on her forthcoming book, The Audacious Raconteur, Leela Prasad presents the story of a barely-known Indian writer in late colonial India who shows that even the most hegemonic circumstances cannot suppress "audacious raconteurs," skilled narrators who fashion narrative spaces that allow them to remain beyond subjugation. The special interest of this talk is the question: What does the bold act of restoring "the subject" to the photograph, the celebrated tool of nineteenth-century "scientific/objective" anthropology, say about the sovereign self?

About the presenter: Leela Prasad is Associate Professor of Religious Studies at Duke University. Her primary interests are primary interests are in the anthropology of ethics, colonial-era anthropology in South Asia, prison pedagogy and Gandhi, and religion & modernity.

Contact: Sarah Rogers