Kanishka Chowdhury  portrait

Kanishka Chowdhury

Professor of English / Director of American Culture & Difference Minor
Degree
M.A., Ph.D., Purdue University
B.A., St. Xavier's College, Calcutta (India)
At St. Thomas since 1993
Office
JRC 342
Phone
(651) 962-5646

 

I’m interested in the ways that culture, politics, ethics, and aesthetics intersect, so in all of my classes we analyze texts as part of complex social formations and in specific historical contexts. Recently, I’ve taught courses on cultural studies, immigrant literatures, Marxist theory, transnational literatures, and writing and resistance. I’ve also written on many of these topics, as well as on contemporary India—the connections between its emerging forms of citizenship and neoliberal economic changes. Lately I have been researching transnational human rights discourse, trying to understand more clearly how that discourse names, locates, and categorizes subjects who are positioned as victims of injustice.

 

 

 

 

Summer 2014 Courses

Summer 2014 Courses
Course - Section Title Days Time Location

Fall 2014 Courses

Fall 2014 Courses
Course - Section Title Days Time Location
ENGL 110 - P4 Intensive Writing - T - R - 1330 - 1510 JRC 227
CRN: 40963 4 Credit Hours The course provides students with intensive practice in writing, enabling them to adapt to the demands of differing rhetorical contexts. Emphasis on understanding writing processes and learning to respond thoughtfully to writing at various stages. Critical reading will be practiced as an integral part of the writing process. Prerequisite: participation in the Academic Development Program
ENGL 337 - 01 Transnational Human Rights/Lit - T - R - 1525 - 1700 JRC 222
CRN: 42369 4 Credit Hours Since September 11, 2001, "human rights" as an area of activism, knowledge, and practice has been foregrounded by terror, torture, preemptive wars, the large movement of dispossessed migrant and refugee populations, and increasing wealth inequality. In this course, we will discuss the proliferation of rights "discourse" during this period, concentrating on several interrelated topics: economic rights, refugee and immigrant rights, gender rights, and environmental and land rights. As we discuss the political, social, and economic ramifications of transnational ideas of rights, we will explore a variety of cultural texts (primarily film and literature) that construct, disrupt, and negotiate the language/discourse of rights. Although "human rights" as an area of activism, knowledge, and practice has a long history, in this class we will be using the United Nations Declaration of 1948 as a key intellectual and political reference point for our discussions, reading it critically as we analyze texts from cultures across the globe. Micheline Ishay's volume THE HUMAN RIGHTS READER will be our main text, and we will also read writers such as Mourid Barghouti, Aminatta Forna, Indra Sinha, Arundhati Roy, and Vandana Shiva. This course satisfies the Human Diversity core requirement and the Diversity distribution requirement for English majors. Prerequisite: ENGL 201, 202, 203, or 204.

J-Term 2015 Courses

J-Term 2015 Courses
Course - Section Title Days Time Location