‘Anthropologising Indian Society: The Colonial Project’ by Dr. Babu C.T Sunil

Dr. Babu C.T Sunil from Assistant Professor, Department of Sociology, University of Delhi presented his research entitled ‘Anthropologising Indian Society: The Colonial Project’ at the Sociological Research Colloquium.

When: Friday, 21st October, 2016 at 3:00 p.m.

Where: Seminar Room (First Floor), Department of Sociology, University of Delhi 


It has now been accepted among the scholars on South Asia that the post-mutiny period in India marked a different stage in the social sciences knowledge production. Beginning with the All India Census in 1871/2, Indian population is counted and classified, and Caste began to span its career in the Indian subcontinent.

It is true that there was no ‘single-master view’ on the caste shared by all the colonial census/ethnographic officers. However, there are broadly two groups of scholars. One group, which included scholars like Risley and his protégé Thurston, propagated the racial view on the caste system while the second, which had Ibbetson, Nesfield, Crook etc. in it, held a functional or occupational view on the origin of the caste system. Reflecting on their theories, this paper would argue that it is through their theoretical articulations on caste that the Indian subcontinent began to be anthropologised.

About the Speaker

Sunil Babu C.T, M.Phil (J.N.U), PhD (J.N.U.), is Assistant professor of Sociology, University of Delhi. He has previously taught in Nagpur University. His teaching and research are concerned with interdisciplinary orientations in social sciences. More specifically, his areas of specialization implicate the interdisciplinary domain of inquiry such as Philosophy of Social Science, Social and Political Theory, Indian Sociology, Education, Cultural Politics of Marginalisation, Caste, Media and Political Process and Modernity and Politics of Knowledge Production with special focus on colonialism, capitalism, Centre-periphery questions etc. He has published articles in Economic and Political Weekly, Interdisciplinary Policy Research and Action etc. 

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