Inderpal Grewal Lecture
Bureaucracy and Masculinity in India after Independence
An evening with Yale professor, Dr. Inderpal Grewal
Our Spring 2013 lecture was held in the Shapiro Admissions Center and widely attended by undergraduates, graduate students, faculty, and South Asian scholars and Women's and Gender studies scholars from the Boston area. Professor Inderpal Grewal gave the ninth lecture in the Soli Sorabjee lecture series in South Asian Studies. A pioneer in the field of transnational feminism, Professor Grewal has served as Chair of the Women's Studies Programs at San Francisco State University, at the University of California, Irvine, and at Yale University. She is the author of Home and Harem: Nation, Gender, Empire and the Culture of Travel (1997) and Transnational America: Feminisms, Diasporas, Neoliberalisms (2005). She is also the co-editor with Caren Kaplan of Scattered Hegemonies: Postmodernity and Transnational Practices (1994) and An Introduction to Women's Studies: Gender in a Transnational World (2001).
Professor Grewal began her lecture with an introduction to the construct of "civil services" during the colonial period in India, and then followed the mutation of British governance into postcolonial politics with a focus on the Indian Administrative Services. In her new project, from which this talk was derived, she reads the memoirs of men who served in the British (ICS) and then the Indian Administrative Service (IAS) as a masculine narrative of the nation. In her talk, she drew upon memoirs as well as archival photographs to tackle the difficult question of postcolonial assertion and colonial mimicry.