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Rumya Putcha

Assistant Professor Ethnomusicology, Women's Studies

Rumya S. Putcha is an assistant professor in the Institute for Women's Studies as well as in the Hugh Hodgson School of Music. Her research interests center on colonial and anti-colonial thought, particularly around constructs of citizenship, race, gender, sexuality, the body, and the law. Her first book, The Dancers Voice: Performance and Womanhood in Transnational India, develops a critical race and feminist approach to Indian performance cultures and is under contract with Duke University Press. Her second book project, “Namaste Nation: Orientalism and Wellness Cultures in the United States” extends her work on transnational performance cultures to critical analyses of capitalist fitness industries within legal and affective discourses of body, race, wellness, and citizenship. 

 

Education

A.B., The University of Chicago, 2003 (American History and Music)

Ph.D., The University of Chicago, 2011 (Music)

 

Selected recent publications:
“Gender, Caste, and Feminist Praxis in Transnational South India” The Journal of South Asian Popular Culture (2019) 17(1): 61-79

“Dancing in Place: Mythopoetics and the Production of History in Kuchipudi” Yearbook for Traditional Music (2015) 47: 1-26

“Between History and Historiography: The Origins of Classical Kuchipudi Dance.” Dance Research Journal (2013) 45(3): 1-20

“The Mythical Courtesan: Womanhood and Dance in Transnational India,” Meridians: Feminism, Race, Transnationalism (2021) 20(1): 127-150.

“Yoga and White Public Space,” Religions (2020) 11: 1-14.

“The Modern Courtesan: Gender, Religion, and Dance in Transnational India,” Feminist Review (2020) 126: 54-73.

Other Musical Interests:

Her research interests center on post-Enlightenment, colonial, and postcolonial thought, particularly around constructs of citizenship, race, gender, sexuality, the body, and the law. Professor Putcha received her Ph.D. from the University of Chicago in 2011 and her first book, Mythical Courtesan | Modern Wife: Feminist Praxis in Transnational South Asia, develops a decolonial feminist approach to South Asian performance cultures. She is currently working on a project titled, “Refrains of a Hillbilly Elegy: Country Boys, Social Media, and the Affective Politics of 21st Century White Supremacy,” which examines expressions of race, citizenship, and post-9/11 American cultural politics within country music publics. Her second book project, “Namaste Nation: Commercial Yoga Industries and U.S. Imperialism” extends her work on South Asian performance cultures to critical analyses of capitalist yoga practices within legal and affective discourses of body, race, wellness, and citizenship.

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