Rukmini Bhaya Nair

Rukmini Bhaya Nair
Professor
Literature
CV Summary: 

Rukmini Bhaya Nair is Professor of Linguistics and English at the Indian Institute of Technology Delhi. She received her Ph.D. from the University of Cambridge and has since taught at universities ranging from Singapore to Stanford and delivered plenary addresses worldwide from Aarhus to Xinjiang. Nair's research interests are in the fields of cognitive linguistics, pragmatics, narrative, English studies, philosophy of language, techno-cultures, literary and postcolonial theory, gender and creative writing.

Author of over a 100 papers and articles, Nair’s widely acclaimed academic books include Poetry in a Time of Terror (Oxford University Press, New Delhi and New York, 2009), Narrative Gravity: Conversation, Cognition, Culture (Routledge, London and New York, 2003), Lying on the Postcolonial Couch (Oxford and Minnesota University Presses, 2002); Translation, Text and Theory: the Paradigm of India (ed., Sage, New Delhi and Thousand Oaks, USA 2002) and Technobrat: Culture in a Cybernetic Classroom (Harper Collins, India, 1997).

Nair is Consulting Editor of Biblio, a leading Indian review journal, and on the editorial board of international, peer-reviewed journals such as the Journal of Literary Semantics (De Gruyter) and Language and Dialogue (Walter Benjamins). She also writes widely in national papers and journals and has been a regular contributor to Australian radio's 'The Book Show' and Mark Tully’s BBC program 'Something Understood'. From 2015 onwards, she has also been an occasional online columnist for NDTV.

In the year 2013, Nair published the first novel -Mad Girl's Love Song - of a trilogy which aims to explore, amongst other themes, the complex love-hate relationship that Indians have with the English language. This novel was in final 10 books 'long-list' for the prestigious DSC prize.

From the time she won, as a student, an Essay Prize in a competition organized by La Stampa, Le Monde, Die Welt and The Times in conjunction with the First International Exhibition on Man & his Environment, Turin, Italy, Nair has been the recipient of several awards (The J.N. Tata Scholarship, the Hornby and Charles Wallace Awards, the Dorothy Leet Grant etc.).

In 2006, Nair was awarded an honorary doctorate by the University of Antwerp for her contributions to the fields of linguistics and narrative theory and was a chosen a Fellow of the Centre for Research in the Arts, Social Sciences and Humanities (CRASSH), University of Cambridge in the same year.

More recently, Nair was awarded the prestigious two-year Senior Fellowship at the NMML (2010-12) for a project on ‘Contemporary Indian Keywords’. In 2016 she has been selected as Senior Professorial Fellow as the Centre for Developing Societies (CSDS). Her latest major grants have been from the Indian Ministry of Science and Technology (DST) to conduct basic research in cognitive science on the theme of ‘Language, Emotion and Culture’ (2010-2014) and from the Indian Council of Social Sciences Research (ICSSR_ on the theme of early childhood development under the rubric 'The Capabilities Approach to Education" (2013-2016).

Head of Department, Humanities and Social Sciences, IITD, from 2006 to 2009 on her return from Stanford University where she was invited to teach in 2005, Nair’s honorary duties currently include being President's Nominee (Visitor) to the Central Universities of Kerala and Tamil Nadu as well as being on the Academic Council of the Society of Fellows, Indian Institute of Advanced Study, Shimla. She serves on the Scholarship Committee of the Open Society Foundation, New York and on the Consultative Board of the International Pragmatics Association (IPRA), which held its 13th biennial meeting for the first time in New Delhi in 2013 and was attended by 500 academics from 60 countries, at an event organized by Nair.

Called 'the first significant post-modern poet in Indian English', Nair has published three volumes of poetry: The Hyoid Bone, The Ayodhya Cantos and Yellow Hibiscus (Penguin India, 1992, 1999, 2004). A fourth collection, Shataka 26/11, awaits publication. Nair’s poems have been widely anthologized and translated into languages as diverse as Chinese, Italian, Macedonian and Swedish. The entry on her in the standard reference volume Oxford Companion to Modern Poetry (OCMP 2nd edition ed. Ian Hamilton and Jeremy Tod, 2014), which contains entries for poets across the world during the past century (1910-2010). including iconic names like T.S. Eliot and Pablo Neruda, says of her work that it "has been widely admired by other poets and critics for its postmodern approach to lyrical meaning and feminine identity." She has read her poetry at international venues from Beijing and Copenhagen to Struga and Sydney. In 1990, Nair received the first prize in the All India Poetry Society/ British Council competition and in the year 2000, she was selected as a 'Face of the Millennium' in a national survey of writers by India Today. Reviewing her poetry in Outlook magazine, Kamala Das, perhaps India's best known woman poet, wrote: "Good poetry makes of me a bloody fool. Rukmini Bhaya Nair's latest book of poems affected me much the same way. I wept. A fine poet, seasoned smooth, Rukmini's Yellow Hibiscus reveals the grandeur of her verse. Honed at the serrated edges of two cultures quite dissimilar, Rukmini's poetry cannot lie idle in "the tranquil square of the senses" but must disturb...Then the question gains significance. Is poetry by its very nature meant to disturb?"

It is this question of the cognitive 'disturbance' and solace that language and literature simultaneously provide that preoccupies Nair, whose writings, both creative and critical, have been included on the syllabi of universities such as Chicago, Delhi, Harvard, Kent, Oxford, Toronto, and Washington. According to Nair, she does research for the same reasons that she writes poetry – to discover the possibilities and limits of language. Married, with two children, she lives in Delhi.

Contact Information

rbnair[at]hss.iitd.ac.in rukmini.nair[at]gmail.com

Research Areas

COGNITION, SIGNS and LANGUAGE

1. NARRATIVE PRAGMATICS AND THE PHILOSOPHY OF LANGUAGE: Towards the development of a rich theory of narrative cognition, evolution and cultural production

2. TRUTH, LIES AND METAPHOR: The study of deception, its evolutionary advantages and variations across cultures, including experimental evidence that differentiates between types of ‘deviation from the truth’ (e.g. metaphor, paradox, hyperbole, euphemism, white lies etc.)

3. EMOTION, GESTURE AND CULTURE: The re-administration of Darwin's questionnaire on the ‘basic’ emotions, their embodied representation and cognitive significance among cultural groups in the light of advances in current brain research. Work on a classification of differences and similarities between cultures based on a technical analysis of language and body-language in these cultures. Interpretation of codified signs and gestures among specialist cultural groups such as Indian dancers, in conjunction with the monitoring (via fmri scans and eye-tracking) of putative differences in activity in the motor-strip neuron or 'Penfield homunculus' of area of the brain

4. LITERARY STYLE AND SURVIVAL: The literary instinct - does it exist and how can we establish its presence? Style as mental disruption and provocation, e.g. the odd case of Salman Rushdie: Literary Darwinism and the Postcolonial Narrative

LANGUAGE ACQUISITION, TRANSLATION, LITERACY and TECHNOLOGY

5. CHILD LANGUAGE: Comparative language acquisition studies of Hindi and English on the basis of intensive taped and video-taped recordings of young children acquiring these languages (2004, 2014)

6. THE SPEECH ACT OF TRANSLATION: The analysis of translation as a speech act and the development of an original set of felicity conditions for it as well as the cultural, including literary, ramifications thereof (2002)

7. LITERACY, LITERATURE, WRITING and CREATIVE WRITING: Studying the evolution of the Indic scripts and possible cognitive differences between these and the Roman script. The relation between writing as a technology and creativity as a cognitive process or ‘event’ (2006, 2009)

8. TECHNOLOGIES, VIRTUAL TALK, AND FINGERTIP CONSCIOUSNESS: The analysis of communication on the internet, based on actual transcripts of conversations and the production of a theory of 'virtual exchange' based on this data. (1997, 2009)

LITERATURE, POSTCOLONIALITY, GENDER, THEORY

9. LIT CRIT, KEYWORDS: Postcolonial Discourse Genres and Issues of Cultural Territoriality, Identity and Indifference, Postcolonial Affect (2003, 2010)

10. SACRED BUREAUCRACIES: A historical and contemporary analysis of bureaucratic language: norms, forms, formality and formalisms not excluding circular, excise, income tax and ta/da forms, with a view to understanding institutional power/desire. (2002, 2009)

11. GENDER STUDIES: Cross-cultural notions of desire & the body. Introducing the prospect of a new disciplinary discourse pertaining to desire, namely: ‘Epithymetics’

12. CULTURAL POETICS: Indian English Fiction & Poetry. The Allure of Global English

Academic Background

Ph.D. (University of Cambridge) 1979-1982

Dip. Linguistics (University of Cambridge) 1978-1977

M.A in English (University of Jadavpur, Calcutta) 1975-1973

B.A. Honours Degree in English (University of Calcutta) 1972-1969

Employment History

Professor of Linguistics & English, Indian Institute of Technology, 2000 to date
Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, IITD Chair of Department 2006-2009
Associate Professor 1992-1999

Invited Visiting Professor, Stanford University 2005-2006

Invited Visiting Professor, Univ. of Washington, Seattle, U.S.A 1994 & 1996

Invited Visiting Professor, Indian Institute of Advanced Study, Shimla 1993

Jawaharlal Nehru University Centre for Linguistics and English, School of Languages, Position: UGC Research Scientist B (Reader/Associate Professor) 1988 to 1991

National University of Singapore Position: Lecturer in Linguistics 1982-87

Cambridge University Department of Linguistics Position: Tutor (Part time) 1979-82

Bombay Municipal Corporation 1978 Ford Foundation Language Development Project
Position: Consultant

Loreto College, University of Calcutta 1975-76
Position: Lecturer in English

Publications

Publications (over a 100 books and articles, not including book-reviews but including review essays based on books and some articles in the popular media):

ACADEMIC BOOKS:

Poetry in a Time of Terror: Essays in the Postcolonial Preternatural (Oxford University Press, Delhi and New York, June 2009)

Narrative Gravity: Conversation, Cognition, Culture (Oxford University Press, India 2002 & Routledge, London and New York, 2003)

Lying on the Postcolonial Couch: the Idea of lndifference (University of Minnesota Press, USA & Oxford University Press, India, 2002)

Translation, Text and Theory: the Paradigm of India (edited: Sage, New Delhi, India, Thousand Oaks, USA and London, UK, 2002).

Technobrat: Culture in a Cybernetic Classroom (Harper Collins, 1997)

POETRY BOOKS:

The Hyoid Bone and (Viking, Penguin Books, 1992)

The Ayodhya Cantos (Viking, Penguin books,1997)

Yellow Hibiscus (Penguin Paperback, 2004).

NOVEL:

Mad Girl's Love Song (Harper Collins, 2013)

ARTICLES:

Forthcoming, 2017-2018:

1. "Epithymetics: The Psychology of Desire" (2017) invited paper in the Annual Review of Indian Psychology, Oxford University Press, UK and the Indian Council of Social Sciences Research (ICSSR).

3. “Localopolis and Cosmopolis: A Indian Narrative” (2017) in the Special Issue on ‘Cosmopolitanism and Cross-cultural Negotiation’ ed. Didier Coste in EU-topías. A Journal on Interculturality, Communication, and European Studies.

4. “The Nature of Language and the Language of Nature: Rabindranath Tagore's Sabda Tattwo or The Essence of Words as an Integrationist Text” (2017, forthcoming) in Integrationism and Humanism: Critical Perspectives in A. Pable (ed.) Routledge Research Series. London and New York: Routledge.

6. “Figuring it Out: Old Modes and New Codes for Multimodality, Technology and Creativity in 21st Century India” in Performing Metaphorical Creativity (2017), in Hidalgo Downing, L. and Kraljevic Mujic, B. (eds.) Amsterdam: John Benjamins.

7. “Post-colonialism Outsourced” in Recoding and Reinventing Theories (2018) in Pireddu, N. (ed.), New York: Palgrave Macmillan.

Current Publications:

12. "Imaginaries of Ignorance: Five Ideas of the University in the 21st Century" (2017, forthcoming), invited paper in The Place of the Humanities in the Indian University, Mrinal Miri (ed.), Routledge and the Indian Council of Philosophical Research (ICPR).

11. “Coming of Age in Delhi” in Seminar, Volume 692, April 2017, Special Issue on the ‘Modern Magazine’, pp. 2-9.

10. "Language, Nation. Freedom: Rabindranath Tagore and Ludwig Wittgenstein on the Epistemology of Education" (2017) in Tagore and Nationalism, K. L. Tuteja and Kaustav Chakraborty (eds) Berlin and London: Springer Nature.

9. “Narrative: Self, Poetry and Politics” (2016) in Demo(s): Philosophy-Pedagogy-Politics ed. H. Letiche, G. Lightfoot and J.-L. Moriceau Rotterdam: Sense Publishers, supported by the University of Utrecht, pp. 35-52.

10. “The Counterfactual Course of Literature: India as an Imaginative Space in the Writings of Jose Saramago” (2016) in Annals of the III International Congress of the PPG - Letras and XVI Literary Studies, Keynote Address at the Conference Proceedings of the Third International Conference of Graduate Studies on ‘The Ways of Literature: Contacts, Contexts and Contrasts’ UNESP , 2015. Web version in both English and Portuguese available at: http://www.ibilce.unesp.br/Home/Eventos472/16sel/anais-do-iii-congresso-...

11. ”Love in Junagadh” Review of Ancestral Affairs by Keki Daruwalla in the Indian Express, January 2, 2016.

12. “Sanitation is my Birth Right: Mulk Raj Anand and the Enduring Romance of the Flush Toilet” (2016) Op-Ed in The Times of India, January 7, 2016.

13. “A Literary Hero: Umberto Eco and the Limits of Death” Literary Obituary in The Indian Express.Sri Lanka Guardian, February 23 and 25, 2016.

14. “Eating Felicity: Review Essay on The Vegetarian by Han Kang” in Biblio, Vols XXI, Nos. 12-13, December, 2016

15. “Virtue, Virtuosity and the Virtual: Experiments in the Contemporary Indian English Novel” (2015) in The History of the Indian Novel in English, ed. Ulka Anjaria, Cambridge University Press, pp. 251-266.

16. “Biblio at 20” Editorial in Biblio, Volume 20, nos. 4-5 March-April, 2015 pp. 5.

17. “Bird watching, blindly” Review article, Go Set a Watchman by Harper Lee in Biblio, Volume 20, nos. 9-10 September-November, 2015 pp14-15.

18. “Narrative as a Mode of Explanation: Evolution & Emergence” in Modes of Explanation: Affordances for Action and Prediction (2014) ed. Michael Lissack and Andrew Garber, Palgrave Macmillan, pp. 140-154.

19. “AD 1564: Shakespeare and Galileo, Infinite in Faculties” (2014) essay in Outlook Magazine, May 6 pp. 64-65

20. "Samskara (ritual), Samsara (life), Samata (equality): In Memoriam U. R. Ananthamurthy" (2014) essay in Biblio, Vol. XIX, Nos. 9-10, p. 7.

21. "Rearview Mirror: Alice Munro's Short Fiction" (2013) essay in Biblio, November-December, 2013, pp. 8-9

22. "Man-watching Mr. Modi: Language and Gesture in Contemporary Indian Political Discourse" (2013), article in Outlook Magazine, June 2013, pp. 19-26

23. "Bringing English into the 21st Century: A Perspective from India" (2012) invited paper in The International Journal of Language, Translation and Intercultural Communication (IJLTIC-1-1) guest edited by Nick Ceramella, editor S. Stephanidos, University of Igoumenitsa, December, 2012, pp. 103-122.

24. "Philological Angst: Or How the Narrative of Census, Caste and Race in India Still Informs the Discourse of the 21st Century" (2012) in WortMachtStamm: Rassismus und Determinismus in der Philologie 18./19 Jh. ed. M. Messling and Ette, O. Wilhelm Fink, Munich, pp. 55-87

25. “Unwinding: A New Symphony” (2012) in Outlook Magazine, 25 June, 2012.

26. “The Nature of Narrative: Schemes, Genes, Memes, Dreams and Screams!” (2011) in Religious Narrative, Cognition and Culture: Image and Word in the Mind of Narrative ed. A. W. Geertz, J. S. Jensen, Equinox Series in Religion, Cognition and Culture, London. pp 117-146.

27.’“Why am I so anxious?” A Study of Attention Bias in Obsessive Compulsive Disorder’ (2011) Co-authored with Shweta Sharma in Psychological Studies, Springer, Berlin and New Delhi, pp. 247-257.

28. “Thinking out the Story Box: Creative Writing and Narrative Culture in South Asia” (2011) in TEXT (Special Issue, Volume 10, 2011) pp. 1-22

29. “States of Reason and Reasons of State: Noam Chomsky’s Metaphors as a Dialogue across Disciplines” (2011) in Language and Dialogue, Volume 2. John Benjamins, Amsterdam. pp. 266-291

30. “Lost in Translation” in Creativity, Language, Literature: the State of the Art (2011) ed. Rob Pope, Ron Carter and Joan Swann, Palgrave, pp. 265-267..

31. “The Lizard of Oz: Indian Adventures in the Antipodes” (2011) in India and Australia: Bridging Different Worlds, Readworthy Publications, ed. Brian Sttodart pp. 28-40.

32. “Chronicle of a Death Foretold” (2011) in Biblio: A Review of Books, October-November Issue, 2011, pp. 6-7.

33. “Listening to Creativity: Narratives of Impairment and Enablement in an Inclusive School” in Creative Engagements with Children (2011, with Annie KoshI) Rodopi Press, Amsterdam and New York, 2011)

34. “Gandhi’s Assassination” in Speaking of Gandhi’s Death (2010) ed. Tridib Suhrud and Peter Ronald deSouza, Orient Blackswan and Indian Institute of Advanced Study, pp. 17-30.

35. “Lex Terroris” Biblio, (July-August Issue, 2010), pp. 22-24.

36. “Yudhishthira’s Lie: The Fiction of India” in PoetiquesComparatistes/Comparative Poetics (formerly the journal Belles Lettresor BLI (Paris, 2010), pp. 227-242

37. “Learning to Write: Integrational Linguistics and the Indian Subcontinent” in Language Teaching: Integrational Linguistics Approaches (2009) ed. M. Toolan, Routledge, London/ New York [pp. 47-72].

38. “The Search for a Universal Language of Governance” in Cultures of Governance and Conflict Resolution (2009) ed. B. Arora, P.R. de Souza and A. Liberatore EU Publication, Brussels [pp. 60-68].

39. “The Princess Diaries” in Biblio, (2009) Vols. Nov.-Dec., [pp 24-26].

40. ‘Writing the Future and the Future of Writing‘(2008) Editorial Article in the Special Issue on Literature of the Asia Pacific Region, Biblio, Volume XIII Nos. 9-10, Sept./Oct., 2008 pp.

41. “Language, Youth Culture and the Evolution of English” (2008) in Language in South Asia ed. B.B Kachru, Y Kachru and S.N Sridhar, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 2008. pp. 466-494.

42. “Language Without a Safety Net” (with AnjanaNeiraDev) in Indian English Women Poets A. Rehman and A. K. Ansari (eds.), New Delhi: Creative Books, 2008. pp. 66-85.

43. “Implicature and Impliculture” in The Art of English: Everyday Creativity, Janet Maybin and Joan Swann (eds.), London, Palgrave Macmillan, 2006, pp. 99-102.

44. "Are We What We Eat?" Seminar Annual Issue, Vol. 545, January 2005. pp.98-103.

45. “English in the 21st Century: A Conversation with David Crystal’, Biblio, 2005

46. "A Literary Architect" in Biblio: A Review of Books, Volume IX, Volumes 1-2, January-February, 2004. pp. 5-7.

47. "Writing Across Worlds: A Discussion on the Role of Literary Journals" in Biblio, Volume IX , Nos. 9-10, September-October, 2004, pp.9-11

48. "Guess What Ashraya Means? The Art of Asylum" in the C-Fonds Journal, The Hague, Holland, Special Issue on the Positive Aspects of Migration, November 2004. pp. 100-109.

49. "Narrative Evolution: In Human Cognition and Across Cultures" in Of Narratives, Narrators edited by RajulBhargava and Shubhshree, Rawat Pub, 2004. pp. 53-61.

50. "The Aesthetics of the Ordinary: Evoking Narrative Wonder Within the Linear Grammar of Modernity" in Evam: Forum on Indian Representations 2: Vols. 1 & 2, January, 2003. pp. 266-288.

51. "Sappho's Daughters: Postcoloniality and the Polysemous Semantics of Gender" in The Journal of Literary Semantics, London Volume 32, Number2, 2003. pp.113-35.

52. "Poetry as an Expression of National Crisis" in the India International Centre Quarterly, Special Issue on 'India: A National Culture?' Vol. 29, 3 & 4, Winter/Spring, 2003. pp. 127-139.

53. "The Linguistic Qualities of the Satanic Verses" in David Smale (ed.) Salman Rushdie: From Midnight's Children to the Satanic Verses, Palgrave Macmilllan, London, 2003. pp. 80-87.

54. "The Right to Rag is Wrong" lead Article in Deccan Chronicle, September 2, 2003.

55. "The Road from Mandalay: Reflections on AmitavGhosh's The Glass Palace" in Amitav Ghosh: A Critical Companion edited by TabishKhair, Permanent Black, 2003. pp. 162-174.

56. "Twins and Lovers: Arundhati Roy's The God of Small Things" in Desert in Bloom: Contemporary Indian Women's Fiction in English, Pencraft International, 2003. pp. 176-198.

57. "On Poetic Expression" in Storylines: Conversations with Women Writers, Asmita and Women's World, edited by Ammu Joseph et al, 2003. pp.135-166.

58. "The A-Z of Nationalism' article, plus Editorial, Special issue on 'Cosmopolitanism and the Nation State' in Biblio: A Review of Books, March-April, 2002. pp.55-58 and 4-6. 36. “Is Astrology Different for Feminists?” in Seminar Volume 505, September, Delhi, 2001. pp. 71-79.

59. "Singing a Nation into Being" in Seminar, Annual Issue Volume 497, January 1, 2001. pp. 95-100

60. "The e-Writing on the Wall" in Angle, Inaugural Issue, Spring, 2001. pp.11-13.

61. "City of walls, City of Gates" in City Improbable: An Anthology of Writings on Delhi edited by Khushwant Singh, Viking Penguin, 2001 [pp. 265-286]

62. "Stealing Fire from the Greeks" in Memories of the Second Sex: Gender and Sexuality in Women's Writing edited by Dominique S. Verma and T.V. Kunhi Krishnan, Somaiya Publishers, 2000. pp. 33-66.

63. "Brainchildren" Review Article on Advances in Human Cognition in Biblio, Volume Nos. 11-12, November-December, 2000. pp.11-15.

64. "Surrogate Tongues: The Magical E-Scripts of Tomorrow" Article in Twenty-one Ideas for the Twenty-First Century: Millennium Issue, Telegraph, January, 2000.

65. "High Noon for Midnight's Children" in The Times of India, April 16, 2000.

66. "Pottermania" in The Times of India, July 16, 2000.1999:

67. "The Mind Has No Sex" Lead paper in Outlook Special 'Stree' Edition, August, 2000 pp. 6-10.

68. "A Question of Answers" Lead Article in the Sunday Indian Express Sept. 24, 2000.

69. "Postcoloniality and the Matrix of Indifference" Lead Paper in the India International Centre Quarterly, May-June, 1999. pp. 7-24.

70. "History as Gossip in Midnight's Children" in Rushdie's Midnight's Children: A Book of Readings, edited by Meenakshi Mukherjee, Pencraft International, 1999. pp. 16-25.

71. "Poetry in a Civil Society" in The Hindu, May 1999.

72. "The Life and Death of Salman Rushdie" in the American Review of Books, July-August, 1998. pp.10-12.

73. "Whispers from Wagah" Review article on Contemporary Pakistani Poetry, in Biblio, February-March, 1998.

74. "Acts of Agency and Acts of God: The Discourse of Disaster" Economic & Political Weekly, March 1997. pp. 535-542.

75. "Twins and Lovers" Review Article on the State of Contemporary Indian Writing (based on The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy in Biblio, May 1997. pp. 4-6

76. "The Literature of the Trace" Review Article on Contemporary Postcolonial Theory (based on Postcolonial Theory: A Reader edited by PadminiMongia in The Book Review, Sept. 1997. pp.38-40.

77. "Heaney's Sense of History at Work and History's Sense of Heaney at Work" in Literature Alive, June 1996. pp. 52-62.

78. "What Did Rushdie Mean and Why?" in The Hindu Literary Supplement, Aug 1997.

79. "Why The God of Small Things Deserves the Booker" in India Abroad, Oct 31, 1997.

80. "The Pedigree of the White Stallion: Postcoloniality and Literary History", in The Uses of Literary History (ed. Marshall Brown), Duke Univ. Press, 1995. pp. 159-186.

81. "Why Does Rushdie Offend?" in Seminar Vol. 437, Annual, Dec 1995. pp. 103-109.

82. "The Sacred Thread of Theory" Review Article on Cultural Studies, (based on Outside in the Teaching Machine By GayatriChakrabortySpivak&The Location of Culture by HomiBhabha), in The Book Review, July-August, 1995. pp.25-26

83. "Out of Practice" Review Article on Literary Theory (based on In Theory by Aijaz Ahmad &Indian Responses to Colonialism in the Nineteenth Century, edited by A. Bhalla and S. Chandra) in The Book Review, 1994. pp. 58-60.

84. "The Ram-ifications of Indian Politics" in Subtext, Seattle, U.S.A., May, 1993.

85. "The Very Short Story and the Very Tall Tale: Towards an Inferential Model of Narrative Structure" in Critical Spectrum: Responses to Contemporary Literary Theories, B. Chandrika (ed.) Papyrus Press. 1993. pp.37-67.

86. "Words Raised to the Power of Two" Review Article on the Phenomenon of Reduplication (based on Reduplication: An Areal, Semantic, Typological & Historical Study by AnvitaAbbi) Special Issue on Linguistics in The Book Review, 1993. pp. 31-33.

87. "Unholy Mess" Review Article on the Ayodhya Crisis (based on Sita's Kitchen: A Testimony of Faith and Inquiry by Ramachandra Gandhi), in Seminar, 1993. 70-72.

88. "Unlike the Cat in the Adage: An Essay in Cross-cultural Haunting" in The Hindu Literary Supplement, 4 April, 1993.

89. "Wilfred Owen's War Poems Reread in an Indian Context" The Literary Supplement, Hindu, July 1993.

90. "Gender, Genre and Generative Grammar: Deconstructing the Matrimonial Column" in M. Toolan (ed.) Text and Context: Essays in Contextualised Stylistics, Routledge, London 1992.pp. 227-254

91. "Monosyllabic English or Disyllabic Hindi: Language Acquisition in a Bilingual Child", in The Indian Journal of Linguistics. 1992. Pp. 51-90.

92. "Language and Linguistics in India" guest-edited, with an Introductory essay, Seminar, March 1992. pp.12-16.

93. "All About Searches" Review Article on Literature and Cultural Performance (based on Theatre and the World: Essays on Performance and the Politics of Culture by RustomBharucha and Contingency, Irony and Solidarity by Richard Rorty) in The Book Review, 1991. pp. 21-22.

94. "From Freud to Rushdie: Notes on the Interpretation of Dreams" in Seminar Vol. 348. July 1991. pp. 32-36.

95. "Expressing Doubt and Certainty: the Tag Question and the 'to' particle in Indian Languages", in Studies in the Language Sciences, Oxford, Dec 1991. pp. 207-227.

96. "Pre-linguistic Similarity and Post-linguistic Difference: Observations on Children's Conceptualization in a Cross-cultural Context", in A. Kwan-Terry (ed.) Child Language Development in Singapore and Malaysia, Singapore Univ, Press, 1990. pp. 35-76.

97. "Dissimilar Twins: Language and Literature" paper at the British Council Seminar on the Teaching of English Literature, Delhi, March, 1990. Published in R. SundarRajan (ed.) The Lie of the Land: English Literary Studies in India, Oxford Univ. Press, 1991. pp. 260-275.

98. "Salman Rushdie: The Migrant in the Metropolis" (with Rimli Bhattacharya) in The Third Text - Special Issue on the Rushdie Affair, Summer, 1990. pp. 16-30.

99. "Text and Pre-text: History as Gossip in Rushdie's Novels" Economic and Political Weekly, May 1989. pp. 994-1000.

100. "The Voyeur's View in Midnight's Children and Shame" Bulletin of the Association of Commonwealth Language and Literature Studies, Seventh Series, Volume 1 1985. pp. 57-75.

101. "Fictional Selves, Empire's Fictions: The Poets of John Company" in C.E. Nicholson and R. Chatterjee Tropic Crucible: Self and Theory in Language and Literature, Singapore University Press, 1984. pp. 193-218.

102. "Rewarding Risks: Clines of Metaphoricity (with Ron Carter and Michael J. Toolan), Journal of Literary Semantics, April 1988. pp. 20-40.

103. "Telling Lies: Some Literary and Other Violations of Grice's Maxim of Quality", Nottingham Linguistic Circular 14 (Special Issue on Pragmatics), 1986. pp.53-71.

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‘Pappu and Feku – the Best We Can Do? 20 April 2015 http://www.ndtv.com/opinion/pappu-and-feku-the-best-we-can-do-756650

‘Satya Nadella and Manjul Bhargava on a Coding Secret’ 26 May 2015 http://www.ndtv.com/opinion/thank-you-satya-nadella-for-seeing-coding-as...

‘An IIT Teacher's View on the Madras Controversy’ 31 May 2015 http://www.ndtv.com/opinion/an-iit-teachers-view-on-the-madras-controver...

‘The Pros and Cons of PM Modi's Silence’ 14 July 2015 http://www.ndtv.com/opinion/the-pros-and-cons-of-pm-modis-silence-781382

‘Four Urgent Questions Provoked by the IIT Roorkee Controversy 17 August 2015 http://www.ndtv.com/opinion/4-urgent-questions-provoked-by-the-iit-roork...

‘Why IIT Founder Nehru Wanted Arts for Engineers’ 19 August 2015 http://www.ndtv.com/opinion/why-iit-founder-nehru-wanted-arts-for-engine...

‘In Cold Blood - Why The Sheena Bora Case Grips Us’ 1 September 2015 http://www.ndtv.com/opinion/in-cold-blood-why-sheena-bora-case-grips-us-...

‘Why Aren't Scientists Returning Awards?’ 20 October 2015 http://www.ndtv.com/opinion/why-arent-scientists-returning-awards-1234280

‘IS and the Use of "Prostitution" Metaphor’ 21 November 2015 http://www.ndtv.com/opinion/is-and-the-use-of-prostitution-metaphor-1246015

‘Bag Wapasi in Delhi’ 15 December 2015 http://www.ndtv.com/opinion/bag-wapasi-in-delhi-1255065

‘Analysis of Rohith Vemula's Suicide Note’ 1 February 2016 http://www.ndtv.com/opinion/analysis-of-rohith-vemulas-suicide-note-1272377

‘Yes, Sanskrit At The IITs May Be a Good Idea But Conditions Must Apply’ 2 May 2016. http://www.ndtv.com/opinion/yes-sanskrit-at-iits-may-be-a-good-idea-but-...

‘The EU Vote is Really an FU Vote’ 25 June 2016 http://www.ndtv.com/opinion/why-britain-turned-into-nation-of-quitters-1...

‘What The Suicides At IIT Tell Us About Where We're Going Wrong’ 16 July 2016 http://www.ndtv.com/opinion/what-the-suicides-at-iit-tell-us-about-where... 433219

“3 Reasons Why Modi's 'Raincoat' Metaphor Is Brilliantly Bruising” 17 February 2017 http://www.ndtv.com/author/rukmini-bhaya-nair/page-1

“When Words like ‘Anti-national’ are Thrown Around” 2 March 2017 http://www.ndtv.com/opinion/when-words-like-anti-national-are-thrown-aro...

“Pelters and ‘pelleters’: What Kashmir can learn from the stoning of the devil at the Haj”
4 October 2016 - with Ashraf Bhat
https://scroll.in/article/816951/what-kashmirs-stone-pelters-and-pellete...

“Going To Xa'Nadu - Cities Dialogue: A conversation between five diverse voices—architect Raj Rewal, activist Bezwada Wilson, conservationist A.G.K. Menon, poet-linguist Rukmini Bhaya Nair and artist-photographer Dayanita Singh, in Outlook Magazine (print and online)
7 November, 2016 http://www.outlookindia.com/magazine/story/going-to-xanadu/298055

Conferences

SELECT INTERNATIONAL & NATIONAL CONFERENCES, 2001-2016:

2016
Invited Speaker and Chief Guest, Tagore International School Graduation Day “Tagore’s Vision”, Delhi, January 25, 2016

Invited Speaker “Chatrooms and Classrooms’ at the Departmental Seminar of the Birla Institute of Technology (BITS), Goa, February 4, 2016

Invited Speaker “Creativity and Freedom” at the Sahitya Akademi and Thunchan Memorial Trust ‘South Indian Poets’ Meet, Mallapuram, Kerala, February14, 2016

Invited Participant, Seminar on ‘The State of the Arts’ organised by The Raza Foundation and The Lal Darwaza Foundation, Gurgaon, March 20, 2016

Chair, Session on the ‘Emotions’ at the ICSSR sponsored seminar ‘Being and Living in a Relational World’ Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, 22-23 march, 2016

Invited Speaker “Grammar Lessons and Language Games: Translating Rabindranath Tagore and Ludwig Wittgenstein at the International Seminar ‘Language and Culture: ‘Englishes’ and Translation Studies’ at the Autonoma University, Madrid, Spain, April 15, 2016

Invited Speaker “Access, Equity and Quality: the Capabilities Approach Applied to School Education in India” at the Pratham Foundation, Delhi, May 30, 2016

Invited Speaker, “External Communications” Panel with Laura Siber and Gyorgi Chkheidcze at the Open Society Foundation Meeting, 21 June, London, June 21, 2016

Invited Speaker, “Translating Rabindranath Tagore and Ludwig Wittgenstein on Children’s Education” Department of English and Applied Linguistics, University of Birmingham, June 28, 2015.

Invited Participant, “Identities and Knowledge Production” at the International Seminar on ‘Thinking Social Sciences’, Indian Institute of Advanced Study (IIAS) Shimla, July 11, 2016

Reading and Discussion “A Story and a Song” at the Bengaluru Literary Festival, August 26, 2016

Invited Seminar Presentation “Child’s Play: Rabindranath Tagore and Ludwig Wittgenstein, Amartya Sen and Martha Nussbaum, on the Epistemology of Education” Centre for the Study of Developing Societies (CSDS), August 26, 2016

2015
Keynote Address, “Gender and Dissent” at the All India Women Writers Conference organized by the Sahitya Akademi, January 29, 2015

Featured Speaker, “Chat Rooms, Class Rooms and Capabilities: Some Policy Implications for Education of the Evolution of English in 21st Century India” at the TEC15 International Conference, organized by the British Council, Hyderabad February 28, 2015

Invited Speaker “Women’s Voices” at the Sahitya Akademi Conference, March 14, 2017.
Invited Keynote “Cognition, Creativity and the Capabilities Approach to Human Development” at the Dayalbagh Educational Institution (DEI), Agra, March 17, 2015

Plenary Address “The Ghosts of Gender’ at the National Conference on ‘Multiculturalism, Identity Crisis and Belonging in Indian Writing in English” held at the Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, IIT Roorkee in association with the Sahitya Akademi, Roorkee, March 21-22, 2015

Invited Speaker, “Aletheia” Annual Philosophy Colloquium, Lady Sriram College (LSR), March 26, 2015

Invited Speaker, “Untouchable bodies and untellable narratives: the Intimate Relations Between Gender and Caste in Colonial/Post-colonial India” at the Master’s Colloquium in British and North-American Studies in Literature, Culture and Translation at the Universidad Autónoma, Madrid , April 9, 2015.

Invited Speaker, “The English Goddess: Postcolonial India, Internet Pluralism and Interdisciplinary Practices” at the Master’s Colloquium in British and North-American Studies in Literature, Culture and Translation at the Universidad Autónoma, Madrid , April 9, 2015

Invited Public Lecture, “Story box: Oral Narratives and Material Culture in Contemporary India at the Universidad Autónoma, Madrid, April 9, 2015

Plenary lecture “Canines, Simians, Humans: Can the methods and insights of pragmatics be extended to the study of interactions with and amongst other species?”, at the 7th edition of the international conference ‘New Developments in Linguistic Pragmatics’, University of Lodz, Poland, April 14, 2015

Invited Speaker “The Scope of Fiction” in the ‘Syntalk’ Series with Anjum Rajabali and Souvik Mukherjee, Mumbai, June 13 2015

Invited Participant, Interactive Session at the American University of Central Asia (AUCA), Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, June 29, 2015

Paper “The Man, the Media and the Message: A Case Study of Political Rhetoric and Pragmatic Adaptability in the Indian General Elections of 2014” at the 14th International Pragmatics Conference, Antwerp, Belgium, 26-31 July, 2015

Keynote Address, “The Counterfactual Course of Literature: India as an Imaginative Space in the Writings of Jose Saramago” at the Third International Conference of Graduate Studies I Literature ‘The Ways of Literature: Contacts, Contexts and Contrasts’ at the Universidade Estadual Paulista (Sao Paulo State University) UNESP San Jose do Rio Preto, Brazil, October 14, 2015

Graduate Lectures on “Postcolonial Literatures: Indian Writing in English and Beyond” at the Universidade Estadual Paulista (Sao Paulo State University) UNESP San Jose do Rio Preto, Brazil, October 6-9, 2015

Public Lecture “Imaginaries of Ignorance: Five Ideas of the University and the Place of the Humanities Within Them”, organized by IISER Pune as part of their 10th year celebrations, IISER Pune, October 30, 2015

Invited Speaker “Celebrating 20 Years of Biblio” at the Chandigarh Literature Festival and in conversation with Rahul Bhattacharya whose book The Sly Company of People Who Care was nominated by Biblio for discussion, 5 November, 2015

Invited Paper, “Grammar Lessons and Language Games: Rabindranath Tagore and Ludwig Wittgenstein on the Epistemology of Education” at the International Seminar ‘Tagore and Nationalism’, Indian Institute of Advanced Study (IIAS) Shimla, 7 November, 2015

Reading and Discussion with the US poet and writer Cole Swenson, Chicago Centre Delhi, November 18, 2015

Invited Speaker, “Cognition and Recognition: Why the Experience of Epiphany Matters Emotionally and Evolutionarily Across Cultures” at the TEQUIP Symposium ‘Language, Literature and Beyond’, IIT Guwahati, November 26-27, 2015

Invited Speaker “Child Marriage, Education and the Capabilities Approach” at the ‘State Level Consultation on Child Marriage and Customary Laws’ organized by Shaheen Women’s Resource and Welfare Association, Hyderabad, November 28, 2015

‘Art Matters’ Discussion with poet and writer Keki Daruwalla at event organized by the Raza Foundation, December 22, 2015

2014
Invited Lecture, 'Women Writers as the Anthropologists of the Future', organized by the Shaheen Women Resource & Welfare Association, Urdu Hall, Hyderabad, January 9, 2014

Invited Paper, 'Five Ideas of the University and The Place of Humanities Within Them' at the National Seminar organised by the Indian Council of Philosophical Research (ICPR) on 'The Place of the Humanities in Our Universities', Delhi, January 13, 2014

Keynote Address, 'Poetry, Gender and Dissent: The Changing Grammars of Education and Culture in 21st Century India' at the National Seminar on “Indian English Poetry by Women since 1980s" organized by the Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, School of Mines, Dhanbad, January 30, 2014

Plenary Lecture, ‘Talking Back to Technology: Theorizing the 'E' in English in the Age of E-learning’ National Seminar organized by Bharati College, Delhi University and the Sahitya Akademi (Indian Academy of Letters), February 5-6, 2014

Keynote Address, 'The Dharma of Desire and the Discipline of Philosophy in the 21st Century: Beyond the Paradigms of Postmodern Difference and Postcolonial indifference' at the National Seminar on the 'Postmodern Paradigm in Philosophy', organized by the Department of Philosophy, University of North Bengal, Siliguri, 13-14 February, 2014

Lecture, 'The Language, Emotion and Culture Project' (together with Professor Purnima Singh), at the Symposium organized at IIT Delhi on this Department of Science and Technology (DST) project based in IITD, February 24-25, 2014

Invited Talk, 'Coping with the Unknown' at the Colloquium on the 'The Unknown' organized by The Raza Foundation for Arts and Culture at the India International Centre (IIC), Delhi, February 27, 2014

Invited Talk, Panel on 'English Courses in the Undergraduate Curriculum' at the Workshop organized at IIT Delhi on 'The English Language Classroom: Gathering Ideas', March 11-12, 2014

Invited Talk, 'Evaluation and Value' on the Panel 'Do evaluation findings inform policy or programme design? What might enhance use?' at the Research Colloquium organized by the National University for Education Planning and Administration (NUEPA), Delhi, 27 May, 2014

Paper, 'The Nature of Language and the Language of Nature: Rabindranath Tagore’s 'The Essence of Words' (Shabdo Tattwo) as an Integrationist Text' at the International Conference on 'Integrationism & humanism' organized by the International Association for the Integrational Study of Language and Communication (IAISLC), Oberaegeri, Switzerland, June 23-26, 2014

Research Presentation 'Who am I? - Scholarship and the Self' at the International Scholarships Board of the Open Society Foundation, London, June 13, 2014

Chair and Panelist on the Session 'The Poet’s Language: Can the Muse be Colonised?' at the Symposium 'Interrogating 'Swaraj in Ideas'', Indian Institute of Advanced Studies, (IIAS), Shimla, 21-22 July, 2014

Invited Speech as Guest of Honour 'Cervantes and Cortazar' at the Instituto Cervantes de Nueva on the occasion of the 100th Birth Anniversary of Julio Cortazar, Delhi, 14 August, 2014

Talk and Reading, 'Women Poets of World War II' at the Session 'The Great War: Poetry in the Trenches' on the occasion of the 100th Anniversary of World War II at the India International Centre (IIC) Annual Festival, 11 October, 2014

Panel Discussion and Reading, 'How Right is the New Right?' at Literati - the Chandigarh Literary Festival', Chandigarh, 7-9 November, 2014

Invited Panel Discussant, 'Roundtable on Anglophone Indian Poetry' held at the Chicago University Centre, New Delhi, 28 November, 2014

Invited Paper, 'Indian Educational Initiatives' at the First meeting of the BRICS Global Educational Initiative, organized by International Relations, the Ural Federal University, Ekaterinburg, Russia, December 6-7, 2014

Invited Talk, 'Imagining International Cooperation Within the BRICS Countries and Examining the Concept of Soft Power through Five Ideas of the University in the 21st Century' at the Higher School of Economics, Saint-Petersburg, December 8, 2014

Plenary Inaugural Speech 'Human Rights, Inhuman Wrongs?' at the Grantees Conference organized by the Alliance for Social Dialogue (ASD), Nepal and the Open Society Foundation (OSF), New York, Kathmandu, 17-18 December, 2014

2013
Invited Plenary Address,"Chat-rooms and Class-rooms: Technology, Teachers, Education & the Evolution of English in Twenty-first Century India" at the International Conference on 'Empowering the English Language Classroom', Malaviya Institute of Technology (MNIT), Jaipur, January 18-19, 2013

Invited Panelist, "The Place of Language and Linguistics in English Studies in India" at the International Workshop on ‘Prospects for English Studies in India and the UK’, sponsored by the UK Arts and Humanities Research Council and The Open University at the Jamia Millia Islamia University, Delhi, February 15-16, 2013

Inaugural Keynote, "Human Resources and Human Resourcefulness: A Developmental Perspective" at the Annual Meeting of the Psychology Department, Lady Sriram College, Delhi University, March 8, 2013

Invited Paper, "Post-Identity Cultures" at the National Seminar on 'Social Representations of Identity in India: An Interdisciplinary Dialogue' funded by the Indian Council of Social Science Research (ICSSR), IITD, March 18-19, 2013

Opening Plenary "The Desire for Theory and the Theory of Desire" at the Meeting on 'Theory' organized by the Department of English, Lady Sriram College, Delhi University, March 23, 2013

Keynote Address, 'Why is the Sea Blue? Narrative Enigma, Evolution, Emotion, Embodiment & Explanation:at the 'Modes of Explanation' International Discussion Conference organized by theInstitute for the Study of Coherence and Emergence (ISCE), Paris, May 21-25, 2013

Chair, Inaugural Whabiz D. Memorial Lecture by Professor Homi K. Bhabha, Harvard University on 'Art and Insecurity', India International Centre, 1 August, 2013

Invited Panelist on 'Narrative' at the International Pragmatics Association IPRA Biennial Conference, New Delhi, September 8-13, 2013

Paper, 'The Pragmatics of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder' (with Shweta Sharma) at the International Pragmatics Association IPRA Biennial Conference, New Delhi, September 8-13, 2013

Paper, 'Emotional Acquisition Children raised in Indian Joint Families' (with Purnima Singh) at the International Pragmatics Association IPRA Biennial Conference, New Delhi, September 8-13, 2013

Invited Paper on 'The Psychology of Desire' at the National Seminar 'Research and Exploration in Psychology' held at the National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences (NIMHANS), Bangalore, September 21-22, 2013

Invited Talk, 'The Linguistic Landscape of India' at the Indian Embassy in Bangkok, October 3, 2013 (visit supported by the Indian Embassy at Bangkok)

Invited Panelist, 'Does Creative Writing Need Critical Theory?' at the International Literary Festival 'Reaching the World', organized by Chulalongkorn University and The Asia Pacific Writers and Translators Organization, September 2-4, 2013

Invited Talk, 'Language and Linguistics in India' Indian Cultural Centre and Embassy of India in Thailand, October 3, 2013

Invited Talk, 'Language and Emotion' at the Colloquium 'Language and Cognition: Why does it matter?' led by Dan Slobin, Emeritus Professor of Psychology and Linguistics, University of California, at the Indian Institute of Advanced Study (IIAS), October 18, 2013

Invited Talk, 'Gender and Dissent' at the English and Foreign Languages University (EFLU), November 8, 2013

Invited Talk, 'Narrative', Department of Comparative Literature, University of Hyderabad, November 9, 2013

Invited Talk, 'The media, the man & the message: A Case Study of Political Discourse and Body Language in 21st Century India' at the Annual Meeting of the Indian Political Economy, University of Hyderabad, November 9, 2013

2012
Keynote Address, "What is Narrative?" at the First Interactive Workshop on Narrative Studies Following Forkhead Paths: Discussions on Narrative the Centre of Advanced Study (Phase II), Department of Comparative Literature Jadavpur University Kolkata, January 18, 2012

Plenary Address, "Feminist Epistemologies" at the Bilingual National Seminar on 'Contemporary Indian Women Writing: Recreating The World Through Words' at the Adarsh Mahila Mahavidyalya, Bhiwani February 24, 2012

Plenary Address, "Mind reading? Literary Texts, Cognitive Maps and Species Memories" at the National Seminar on Reading', Siliguri University, March 22, 2012

Keynote Address, "Poetry and Prophesy" at the National Seminar: “Prophetic Visions and Voices: Writing the Self and the World”, Patiala University, March 29, 2012.

Plenary Address, "Indian Keywords" at the National Seminar-cum-Workshop 'Towards a Conceptual Lexicon for India in 21st Century', April 19-20, 2012

Paper, "Modularity, Language, Emotion: Speech Acts in Indian Mothers' Narratives' at the 6th International Conference on Language, Discourse, and Cognition (CLDC), Taipei, Taiwan, 4-6 May, 2012

Paper, "Language, Emotion, Narrative: The Role of Pragmatic Universals in Cultural Cognition" at the 6th Lodz International Symposium on New Developments in Linguistic Pragmatics (NDPL) Lodz, 26-28 May 2012.

Invited Lecture, "Script Boxes and Story Boxes: The Material Culture of Oral Narratives in India in the Occasional Lecture Series of the World Oral Literature Project, hosted by the Universities of Cambridge and Yale and organised at the Centre for Research in the Arts, Social Sciences & Humanities (CRASSH), University of Cambridge. June 1, 2012

Plenary Lecture, "Emotional Encounter? What Happens When Darwin and Bharata Converse" at the International Seminar on "Reflection on Emotions in Indian Thought-Systems” at the Indian Institute of Advanced Study, Shimla, 4-6 September 2012

Panel Discussions on "Scholarships" and "Lessons from India" at the Open Society Meeting in Budapest, Hungary, September 12-14, 2012

Plenary Lecture, "Mysteries, Machines, Mind & Memes: Discovering the Delights of Dystopia" at the Multidisciplinary Conference on 'Conflict to Convergence: Building Holistic Perspectives’. Gargi College, University of Delhi, November, 6-8, 2012

Chair, Session on "Lu Xun: A Critical Appraisal" at the International Conference on ‘China’s Ongoing Quest for Cultural Modernity into the 21st Century: Lu Xun and his Legacy’ organized by the IIC November 15-17, 2012

Invited Public Lecture, “In Search of Darwin’s Orient: A Cross-cultural Perspective on Emotional Registers in Everyday Indian Life, Literature, and the Arts” Organized by the NYU Research Group on Transnational Everyday Life and co-sponsored by: Postcolonial Colloquium, Dept. of English, NYU, December 12, 2012

2011
Plenary Lecture "The Way Forward' at International Conference, Asian University for Women, Dhaka, January 19-22

Plenary Lecture "Caste, Race, Census and the Indian Imaginary", University of Potsdam, Berlin, May 26-29, 2011

Special Plenary Lecture, IIT Gandhinagar, International Seminar on 'Alterities' Sept. 9-11
Plenary Lecture "Script Boxes and Story Boxes: the Material Culture of Orality' International Conference on 'Orality', Indian Institute of Advanced Study (IIAS) October, 13-15

Invited Lecture "Language and Emotion as Human Resources: A Developmental Perspective from India', at the 9th International Language and Development Conference, Special Theme 'Language and Social Cohesion' Colombo, October 17-19

Invited Speaker at the International Hay Literary Festival, Session on "The Poetry of Kamala Das", Thiruvanathapuram, November, 17

Invited Lecture, "The Nature of Language and the Language of Nature' at the International Seminar on Tagore and Indian Literature, Indian Institute of Advanced Study, November 13-15

Plenary Lecture, "The Goa that Never Was: Jose Saramago's Counterfactual Narrative" at the "Goa 1961 and Beyond" International Conference organized by the Indian Institute of Advanced Study (IIAS) and the Centro de Estudos Sociais (Coimbra University).at Goa University, Panaji, December 18-21

2010
Invited Paper ‘Yudhisthira’s Lie: the Fiction of India’ presented at the International Conference ‘Fictions and Cultures’ held at l’Université Paris Diderot, Bâtiment des GrandsMoulins, Paris VII, January 7-9

Invited Plenary ‘Narrative Cognition’ at the National Symposium on ‘Culture and Cognition: A Developmental Perspective’, Delhi University, January 23-25

Inaugural Keynote ‘Voyages of Discovery’ at the Fourth Biennial International India-Australia conference on ‘The Challenges of Literary and Cultural Diversity’ Dayanand College, Ajmer, January 22-23

Paper ‘Angry Male or Emotional Male?’ (co-author: Srividya Rajaram) at the 36th National Annual Conference of the Indian Association of Clinical Psychologists on ‘Clinical Psychology for a Changing World: Practices, Training and Research’, NIMHANS, Bangalore, February, 1-3

Paper ‘Speech Patterns in Dissociative Convulsions: Conversational Analysis as a Qualitative Assessment Tool’ (co-author: Shweta Sharma) at the 36th National Annual Conference of the Indian Association of Clinical Psychologists on ‘Clinical Psychology for a Changing World: Practices, Training & Research’, NIMHANS, Bangalore, Feb, 1-3

Invited Inaugural Address on ‘Reading with Theory and Reading without Theory‘, followed by Plenary Paper on ‘Is there a Postcolonial Reading of a Text?’ at the MHRD/AICTE Winter School on ‘Imaginative Reading, Creative Writing: Language, Literature and the Teacher’, February 1-7

Invited Paper ‘Thinking Out of the Story-Box: Creative Writing and Narrative Culture in South Asia’ at the International Conference on ‘Writing across Cultures’ held at the City University of Hong Kong, March 7-9

Invited Lecture ‘Mind Machine or Material Body: the Mysterious Language of the Brain’ at the National “Brain Awareness Week” organized by the Indian Institute of Information Technology (IIIT) with the support of the National Brain Research Centre (NBRC), March 11-15

Invited Paper ‘English in 21st Century India: Postcoloniality, Interdisciplinarity and the Internet’ at the CNRS Conference ‘Les langues de la Reserche en Science HumainesetSociales: Du Monolinguisme et Plurilinguisme Editorial?’ held at the College de France, Paris, April 15-16

Invited Paper ‘Homo Phoneticus Indicus and Integrationalism’ at the Colloquium ‘Linguistics in the 21st Century’ organized by the International Association for the Integrational Study of Language and Communication (IAISLC) and the School of English, Faculty of Arts, The University of Hong Kong (HKU), May 6-8

Invited Talk/s ‘Memory, Tradition and Poetry’ 2nd ‘India-China Dialogue’ at the ‘Almost Island Conference, Beijing and Shanghai. May 20-28

Paper ‘The First Language of Infancy ; an Indian Perspective’ (with Priyanka Agrawal, in absentia) at the Inaugural Symposium sponsored by the Asian Association of Social Psychology, 12th International Conference on Language and Social Psychology, Brisbane, Australia, June

Paper ‘Detecting Non Epileptic Seizures: Conversational Analysis as a Clinical Research Tool’ (co-author: Shweta Sharma, in absentia) at the Inaugural Symposium sponsored by the Asian Association of Social Psychology, 12th International Conference on Language and Social Psychology, Brisbane, Australia

Invited Paper ‘Complicated Cakes: Cities of Literature, Countries of the Imagination’ at the Worlds International Literary Salon on ‘The Education of the Imagination’, University of East Anglia, June 20-24

International Conference Paper ‘States of Reason and Reasons of State: A Study of Noam Chomsky’s Metaphors (1957-2008)’ presented on my behalf (in absentia) by Alan Cienki at the Eighth International Conference on Researching and Applying Metaphor (RAAM) on ‘Metaphor and Domains of Discourse’ Vrije Universiteit (VU), Amsterdam, Netherlands, 30 June-3July

Invited Paper ‘On Narrative Theory’ at the 10th Refresher Course in English The Academic Staff College, Jamia Millia Islamia, September

Invited Paper ‘Diamonds, Water or Dust: Evaluating the Legacy of the Commonwealth’ at the International Conference on ‘Historical Legacies and Contemporary Writing in the Commonwealth’, Sahitya Akademi (The Indian Academy of Letters) Delhi, October, 8-10

Invited Inaugural Keynote ‘Research Methods in the Humanities and Social Sciences’, Administrative Staff College (MANUU), Hyderabad, October13-14

Invited Plenary, ‘Understanding Ourselves’ at the University Grants Commission (UGC)
National Seminar ‘Reflections on Indianness’, Muzaffarpur, Bihar, December 9-10

2009
Invited Presentation on ‘Cultural Translation and Theory’ at the International Workshop on ‘French Theory, Cultural translation and the Problems of Interdisciplinarity’ organized by the CHS, Universite de Rennes 2 and the Universite de Paris 8, Delhi January 20-21

Invited Talk ‘Language and Linguistics’ at UGC National Refresher Course for University and College Teachers, Centre for Professional Development in Higher Education, (CPDHE), University of Delhi, March 26

Invited Inaugural Lecture ‘The Language of Touch’ at the ‘Workshop on Touch and Allied Behaviors’ organized under the aegis of the Quality Improvement Program, IITD, May 25-28

Invited Talk ‘The Rebirth of Learning and the Redundancy of Literature’ at the Worlds International Conference on ‘The Idea of the University’ Univ. of East Anglia, June 22-26

Paper on ‘The Pragmatics and Poetics of Racial Difference’ at the 11th International IPRA Conference, Melbourne Australia, July, 13-17

Invited Talk ‘Indian Poetry in English’ for the ‘Writing & Society Research Group’
University of Western Australia, Sydney July 14

‘Literary Theory Today’ at the International Conference on ‘English Language and Literature’, Dept. of English, Vidya Bharati Colege, Amravati, 12-13 December

‘Theories of Metaphor and Theory of Mind’ Plenary Lecture at the international Conference on ‘The Language-Cognition Interface: the Sate of the Art’ held at the Centre for Behavioral and Cognitive Science, Allahabad, December 6-9

Invited Lecture 'Future Frenemies? sms, blogs, email, tweets, love and swine flu in
post-identity cultures', at the National Seminar on English Studies, Gargi College, University of Delhi, December 10

Inaugural Speech ‘Asia and South Asia’ at the 8th Biennial Conference of the Asian Association for Social Psychology (AASP), IIT Delhi Dec 11

Paper ‘Non-verbal Communication in Indian Culture: Tactile Expressions of Emotion in Early Childhood’ (co-author: Priyanka Agarwal) at the 8th Biennial Conference of the Asian Association for Social Psychology (AASP), IIT Delhi and Habitat Centre Dec 11-15

Paper, ‘The Cultural Construction of Non Epileptic Attack Disorder (NEAD) in India: Conversational Analysis as a Qualitative Assessment Tool’ (co-author: Shweta Sharma) at 8th Biennial Conference of the Asian Association of Social Psychology, IIT Delhi and Habitat Centre Dec 11-15

2008

Keynote Address ‘Gandhi’s Assassination’ at the National Seminar ‘Speaking of Gandhi‘, Sevagram, Ahmedabad, January 30

Invited Lecture on ‘Contemporary Linguistics’ at the UGG Sponsored Refresher Course for University Teachers, Department of English, February 19

Invited Talk on ‘Poetry and Cultural Difference’ at the First ‘Almost Island Conference’ between Indian and Chinese Writers, March 7-9

Invited Talk on ‘Language and Multilingualism in a Federal State’ at the International Roundtable ‘Federation on Federalism; Unity or Diversity?’ Punjab University, Chandigarh, March 18-19

Invited Plenary, ‘Postmodern Difference and Postcolonial Indifference: Sacred bureaucracies and reconfigured Identities in Postcolonial India’ at the Instituto Superior de Ciências do Trabalho e da Empresa (ISCTE), April 8

Plenary Talk ‘“I’m a Riddle in Nine Syllables”:The Poetics, Psychology and Pragmatics of Metaphor in Cross-cultural Contexts’ at the 7th Conference on Researching and Applying Metaphor (RaAM 7), University of Extremadura, Cáceres,Spain, May 29-31

Invited Lecture on ‘Language Acquisition’, Jamia Millia Islamia, Refresher Course for Teachers, Delhi, May 28-30

Inaugural Address’ Poetry is the Language of a State of Crisis’, Opening of the Creative Writing Conference ‘Writing the Future’, Indian Institute of Advanced Study, Shimla, October 13

Joint Inaugural Lecture with Prof. Rosa Perez of the ISCTE, Lisbon, ‘Body of Knowledge: European Experience and the Indian Imaginary in the 21st Century’ at the EUNIC (European Union National Institutions for Culture’, New Delhi, October 31

Invited Paper, ‘The Search for a Universal Language of Governance’ at the European Union International Conference on ‘Cultures of Governance and Conflict Resolution’ Euro India dialogue on Multiculturalism, Indian Institute of Advanced Study, Shimla, November 21-23

Invited Paper, ‘Keywords in a Multilingual Millennium: A Perspective From the Indian Subcontinent’ at the European Union International Conference on ‘Multilingualism and Intercultural Dialogue in Globalisation’ Delhi University, December

2007
Invited Talk ‘Human Rights, Inhuman Wrongs’ at the Amnesty India Meeting ‘the Protest is Still On’, January 14

Plenary Paper, ‘Technological Transformations: Bureaucracy, Identity and Gender or the BIG Interdisciplinary Questions of the 21st Century, at the National Seminar, Delhi College of
Arts and Commerce (DCAC), Delhi University, Jan 24

Invited Paper ‘Exclusionary Practices and Gender-based Censorship’ at the Women’s World’ International Conference on Censorship, India International Centre (IIC), February 19-23

‘Just Words? Action, Argument and Agreement in the Indian Cultural Context’ at the International Transcultura Conference, Beijing University, February 5-6

Invited Lecture ‘World Class? The Humanities and Social Sciences in the Context of the
Indian Institutes of Technology’ at the International Conference organized by the National
Institute of Science, Technology and Development Studies, NISTADS in collaboration with the Deutscher Akademischer Austausch Dienst (DAAD), February 4

Invited Lectures on ‘Postcolonialism’ and ‘Literature and Gender’, broadcast via EDUSAT, April I and 8

Keynote Lecture ‘A University of One’s Own: Envisioning Education and Empowerment’ at the Regional Symposium of the Asian University for Women, Bangladesh-China Friendship Convention Centre, Dhaka, May 24

Chair, Final Plenary Session, 10th International Pragmatic Conference (IPRA), Goteberg, Sweden, July 13

Invited Talk ‘Initiatives for Asia’ 1st International Board Meeting of the Asia Pacific Writing Partnership, Bali, Indonesia, September 25-26

Invited Paper, ‘Language Legacies: Indian illusions and the Delusions of Democracy’ at the International Seminar on Democracy organized by the Centre for the Study of Developing Societies (CSDS), Sept 29

Invited Discussant at the British Council Conference ‘English for Progress’, Chennai, November 19-21

2006
Plenary, ‘Texts, Teachers, Technologies’ International Conference International Education: A Matter of Heart’, organized by the University of Monash, Australia at in Campus in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, February 11-13

Invited Speaker, ‘Narrative of Disaster’, Department of English, Emory University, USA, March 20-25

Invited Speaker, ‘Technology and Communication’ Georgia Perimeter College, Georgia University,

Invited Paper ‘Whose line is it, anyway? Aesthetics and Culture’ Centre for South Asian Studies and the English Department, University of Toronto, Canada. March 26-26

Invited Paper ‘Dancing Shiva: the Aesthetics of Culture’ Department of Linguistics, University of Antwerp, March 10-15

Invited Speaker ‘Postcolonial Conversations’ at the Centre for Research in the Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences (CRASSH), May 25

Paper on ‘Narrative and Stigma’ International Conference on Narrating Race, University of Singapore, July 10

Plenary ‘Postcolonial Discourses’ at the International Conference on Discourse and Identity organized by the Federal and Catholic Universities of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, September 10

Paper ‘The Right to Dream: Strategies of Reciprocal Knowledge’, International Transcultura Conference, November Beijing May 20

2005
Invited Paper ‘The Discourses of Disaster’ Indian Social Studies Trust (ISST, UN Sponsored Organization), February

Keynote Plenary ‘Indian Writing in English’ National Conference on The Role of English Literature in Indian Universities’ March

UGC Lectures on ‘Comparative Literature and Translation Studies’, Invited by the Department at Comparative Literature, Jadavpur University

Plenary Lecture ‘Pragmatics, Pragmatism and the Postcolonial’, Biannual Conference of the International Pragmatics Association, Riva Del Garda, Italy July 9-13

Invited Paper ‘Writing and Cognition’ Department of Linguistics, University of California at Davis, USA February 20

2004
Paper at the National Conference ‘The Guarded Tongue: Women Writing’, Guwahati, May, 2004.

Plenary 'The Interior of Words' at the International Creative Arts Programme, National University of Singapore, June 10

Plenary Speaker, on 'Writing, Scripts and Cognition' at the International Conference on Integrational Linguistics and Language Teaching, Birmingham, July

Paper on 'Contemporary Indian English Fiction and the New Technologies' at the Leeds International Conference on Invention: Literature and Science, Leeds, July.

Plenary Speaker, 'Head, Heart and Belly: Cross-cultural Sign Systems' at the First International Conference on Language, Culture and Mind, Portsmouth, July

Plenary on 'Bringing English into the 21st Century: Postcoloniality, Pluralism and the English Language in Contemporary India' at the First International Conference on Discourse and Cultural Transformation, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou, China, October 0

Invited Speaker on 'Translation' and on 'Language and Culture on the Internet: the Case of India', Henan Normal University, Xinxiang, China, October. 20

Keynote Address ‘New Voices, Old Choices?’ at the Sahitya Akademi ‘New Voices’ seminar, Ahmedabad, December

2003
Invited Paper on Indian Poetry in English, ACLALS, JNU, January

Invited Paper ‘Technology and Writing’ International Conference on Women Writing in South Asia, British Council, February

Invited Paper at an international seminar on the Intellectualization of the African Languages including Afrikaans, University of Cape Town, South Africa, July

Paper at the International Pragmatics Conference, Toronto, Canada, July.
Plenary on my book Narrative Gravity at the International Seminar on Religious Cognition and Culture at the Universities of Aarhus, Denmark, October.

Invited Seminar on 'The Speech Act of Translation' in the Department of Linguistics at the University of Linkoeping, Sweden

Invited Lecture and Seminar on my book Lying on the Postcolonial Couch at the University of Washington at Seattle, October

Invited Speaker on 'Language and Youth Culture in South Asia', CLIC Speaker Series, at the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA), October

Plenary on 'Emotion, Food and Culture' at the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), London, October

Paper on 'Narrative Cognition and Evolution' at the Convergences '03 International Conference on Knowledge, Culture, Language and Information Technologies, held under the aegis of the UNDL, at the Library of Alexandria, Egypt, December (in absentia)

2002
Invited Paper, ‘Stories and Selves: The three Paradoxes of Narrative’ National Seminar ‘Beyond the Linguistic Turn’, JNU January

Invited Paper, ‘English in Education’ National Seminar on Language Education in Science and Technology, Delhi University, February

Invited Paper, ‘The Aesthetics of Narrative’ National Seminar on Saundaryaor the Concept of Beauty on Indian Aesthetics’, JNU, February

Invited Paper ‘Recoding the Book of Man: Gender and the Genome’ at the National Seminar on Text and Theory, Sahitya Akademi, March

Paper 'A Chat Room of One's Own: Technological Innovation and Cultural Identity' at the PALA International Conference, U.K, April

Plenary Speaker 'Gender and Language' International Conference on Literary Semantics, Birmingham, April

Invited Speaker 'Postcoloniality and Literary Genre' Inaugural Conference on the Initiation of a Department of Anglophone Studies, Saarbrucken, Germany

Closing Plenary, International seminar on Philosophy, Language and Literature, University of East Anglia

2001
Invited Paper ‘Women and Censorship Seminar organized by Kali at Anandgram, Delhi, January

Invited Paper ‘On Translating into English’ at the National Seminar ‘Translating India’ SahityaAkademi, January

Invited Paper ‘Indian English Poetry at the Turn of the Century’ at the SahitaAkademi National Seminar “Indian Women’s Wrting at the Turn of the Century

Invited Lecture, Copenhagen University 'Postmodern Difference &Postcolonial indifference' June

Plenary Lecture on ' the Nature of Narrative' The International School of Communication Studies, Odense University, June

Invited Paper, on 'The Emergence of Metaphor at the 'EU Conference on The Natural and Cultural Bases of Human Reasoning, CNRS, & Sorbonne University, Paris, June

Invited Paper, on 'Grice Revisited: Bilingualism & Child Language' at the Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics, Nijmegen, June

‘Women and Censorship’ Asmita Conference Hyderabad, July

SELECTED POETRY/FICTION READINGS:

2014
Readings from poems and panel discussion with Akeel Bilgrami, Hoshang Merchant and Keki Daruwalla at the 2nd Wahbiz Merchant Memorial Lecture, 11 January 2014

Reading from novel Mad Girl's Love Song and discussion with Ivan Vadislavic and Raul Soni at the Jaipur Literary Festival, January 17 to 21, 2014

Reading from poems in the session 'Poetry-wallahs', Jaipur Literary Festival, January 17 to 21, 2014

Reading from novel Mad Girl's Love Song and discussion with Peter Ronald deSouza, Rosa Perez and Manju Kak at the World Book Fair, Delhi, February 22, 2014

Reading from poems at the Colloquium on the 'The Unknown' organized by The Raza Foundation for Arts and Culture at the India International Centre (IIC), Delhi, February 27, 2014

Readings from poems and discussion at the 'Kavita Goshthi' (Poetry Meet) organized by the Chandigarh Sahitya Akademi (CSA) March 16, 2014

Reading from poems in the session 'The Poet’s Language: Can the Muse be Colonised?' at the Symposium 'Interrogating 'Swaraj in Ideas'', Indian Institute of Advanced Studies, (IIAS), Shimla, 21-22 July, 2014

Reading from poems at 'Literati - the Chandigarh Literary Festival', Chandigarh, 7 November, 2014

2013
Reading from novel Mad Girl's Love Song at the India International Centre, Delhi, 1 August, 2013

Reading from novel Mad Girl's Love Song at the Crossword Bookstore, Ahmedabad,23 August, 2013.

Reading from novel Mad Girl's Love Song at the Oxford Bookstore and discussion with writer K.R Usha, Bangalore, 20 September

Poetry Reading and Panel Discussion at the International Pune Literary Festival, 22 September 2013

Poetry Reading at the International Literary Festival 'Reaching the World', organized by Chulalongkorn University and The Asia Pacific Writers and Translators Organization, 4 October 2013

Poetry Reading and Discussion at the Department of Comparative Literature, University of Hyderabad, 9 November 2013

Poetry Reading at the Workshop on Women's Livelihoods organized by the International Centre for Human Development, UNDP, to celebrate 50 years of SEWA, Ahmedabad, 28 November, 2013

2011
Reading at the India International Centre with Michele Houston and others at the event 'Connecting Cultures through Lenses and Words', collaboration IAFA and the Ministry of Culture, New Delhi, January 11

Reading and Talks in Mumbai with leading Chinese writers, collaboration 'Almost Island' literary magazine, December 19

2010
Reading (with Chinese Translations), Tsinghua University, Beijing May 24
Reading and Talk, Second Indo-Korean Literary Meet, India International Centre, Delhi,
July 3

2009
Reading and Talk, University of Western Australia, Sydney, July 14

Reading, Struga International Poetry Festival, Macedonia, August 19-23

Reading, American Centre ‘Word Wine’ organized by Delhi Poetree Society, May 29

2008
Reading, ‘Writing the Future’ Festival of Creative Writing’, Shimla

Reading, Sahitya Akademi Delhi Launch of Language for a New Century’ Oct. 23

Reading for the Poetry Society of India, India International Centre, August 8 2007

Reading ‘Poetry for Prakriti’ Landmark Festival, Chennai, December 15-30

2007
Reading with Patience Agbabe, UK Poet at the British Council Delhi, Jan 9

Reading and Talk, ‘Protest Poetry’, Gargi College, Jan 24

Reading, Cambridge Seminar ‘Participants’ Poetry’, July 7-11

2006
Reading from Yellow Hibiscus, National Library, Ottawa, Canada, March 31 2006
Reading from Yellow Hibiscus, English Department, Stanford University, April 12, 2006

Reading from Yellow Hibiscus, Cambridge University, June 6, 2006

Reading from Yellow Hibiscus at the Festival of Arts, India International Centre, 8 Oct. 2006

2005
Reading and Talk, Indraprastha College, Delhi University, 10 February, 2005

Reading, American Centre, Inauguration of the U.S. Book and Reading Month, April 29, '05

Reading at ‘Open Space’, Pune, 21 May, 2005

Reading and Talk on Poetry, India International Centre, 5 August, 2005.

2004
Reading at the Irish Embassy with Philip MacDonough and others, August 13, 2004.

Reading from The Ayodhya Cantos on the theme ‘Narrative Poetry’, India International Centre and Sahitya Akademi, September 23, 2004

Reading of poems on Gandhi as part of the Gandhi Jayanthi celebrations, October 4, 2004.

Reading at Oxford Book Store with Keki Daruwalla, November 24, 2004

2003
Reading at the Association of Commonwealth Languages and Literatures Conference, Jawaharlal Nehru University, January 24, 2003.

Reading, American Centre, Embassy of the United States of America, February 13, 2003.

Reading & Discussion, British Council International Women Writers' Workshop, Feb. 19, 2003.

Reading on the theme 'Protest Literature', India International Centre/SahityaAkademi, 10 Oct, 2003.

2002
Reading, Sahitya Akademi, National Convention of Poets, March 21

Reading and Workshop with School Students, post-Gujarat, April 26

Reading, Workshop and Lecture, St. Stephen's College, Delhi Univ. October 25

Reading and Lecture, Gargi College, Delhi University, December 19

2001
Reading of the Translation of the 'Bhavani Ashtakam', Opening Day, Sahitya Akademi National Seminar Indian Women's Writing at the Turn of the Century, Feb 22

Printemps Poetry Reading, French Cultural Centre, 30 March 2001

Poetry Reading, Copenhagen University, 14 June, 2001

Poetry Reading, Golconda Fort, Hyderabad, 21 July, 2001

Projects

Crosslinguistic Acquisition of Sentence Structure (CLASS): A research collaboration with Ben Ambridge, University of Liverpool, and Bhuvana Narasimhan, University of Colorado. 2016-2019

The Geography of Philosophy: An Interdisciplinary Exploration of Universality and Cultural Diversity in Fundamental Philosophical Concepts: A research collaboration with Professor Stephen Stich, Rutgers University, Professor Edouard Machery, University of Pittsburgh, and Professor Justin L Barrett, Fuller Graduate School of Psychology. 2017-2022

'The Capabilities Approach to Education: Access, Equity and Quality', competitive project, funded by the Indian Council of Social Sciences (ICSSR) Funding: Rs. 50-70 lakh, November 2013 to December 2015, duration 2 years: Principal Investigator

'Language, Emotion and Culture’, competitive project funded by the Cognitive Science Initiative (CSI) of the Department of Science and Technology (DST) Funding: approximately Rs. 1 crore, March 2010-March 2014 duration 4 years: : Principal Investigator

‘Open Sesame: Keywords for the Indian Subcontinent’, fully funded Fellowship and Project as Senior Fellow, Nehru Memorial Museum and Library (NMML), July, 2010 to July 2012, duration two years): : Principal Investigator

‘Redistributing Darwin’s Questionnaire of the Expressions of the Emotions in Man and Animals a Hundred Years Later’: A Study on the Cultural Evolution of Emotion (2005 and ongoing)

International Collaboration on Abstract and Emotion Words in English and Dutch with Dr. Falk Huettig at the Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics (2010 and ongoing)

International Collaborative Research with Professor Riccardo Viale of the Fondazione Rosselli, Milano, on "Cross-cultural Reasoning and Cognitive Patterns" (1999) Katha-Indian Institute of Technology Project on "Text, Theory, Translation & Culture" Chief Investigator (July 1996 - June l998)

University Grants Commission (UGC) funded Research Project "Conceptual Issues at the Semantics/Pragmatics Interface in relation to Gricean, Whorfian & Developmental Paradigms" Chief Investigator (May 1988 - May 1993): : Principal Investigator

Honours

1975 International Essay Prize, competition organised by La Stampa, Le Monde, Die Welt &The Times in conjunction with the First International Exhibition on Man & his Environment, Turin, Italy

1976-77 J.N. Tata Scholarship for Graduate Study at Cambridge

1978-79 Dorothy Leet Grant, Federation International des Femme Diplomees des Universities, Geneva

1979-81 Hornby Foundation Fellowship (British Council) for doctoral research at Cambridge

1989 First Prize, All India Poetry Competition, Poetry Society and the British Council

1990 Charles Wallace India Trust Research Grant & British Council Visitorship, London

1992 Scholarship, US Sub-commission for the Humanities to the ‘School of Criticism and Theory’ Dartmouth College

1994 Member, National Team of Writers, invited by the Swedish Govt. and Sponsored by the Sahitya Akademi (Indian Academy of Letters)

1999 Represented India as a Fellow at the Commonwealth Writers Conference, Cambridge

2000 'Face of the Millennium' in Literature, chosen by the leading features magazine India Today,

2006 Fellowship, Centre for Research in the Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences, Cambridge University

2006 Honorary Doctorate awarded by the University of Antwerp, Belgium.

2009 Indian Representative sponsored by the Indian Council of Cultural Relations (ICCR) to the Struga International Poetry Festival, Macedonia, 2009 which featured poets from over fifty countries

2010-12 Senior Fellowship, Nehru Memorial Museum and Library (awarded, July 2010)

2010-2014 Principal Investigator of major grant (approximately Rs 95 lakh) awarded under the competitive National Cognitive Science Initiative of the Department of Science and Technology (Government of India) for a basic science project on ‘Language, Emotion and Culture’ (duration three years, March 2010 to December 2013, extension period 9 months).

2014 Entry in the standard reference volume Oxford Companion to Modern Poetry (2nd edition ed. Ian Hamilton and Jeremy Tod, 2014). OCMP contains entries for poets across the world during the past century (1910-2010) with iconic names like T.S. Eliot and Pablo Neruda. The entry for Nair says, inter alia, that her work "has been widely admired by other poets and critics for its postmodern approach to lyrical meaning and feminine identity."

2014 First Novel Mad Girl's Love Song, published in 2013, on the 10 book Long-list for the US $ 50,000 DSC Prize (the richest prize for South Asian Fiction)

2015 Narrative Gravity: Conversation, Cognition, Culture (2003) by Nair republished as a 'Key text' in Applied Linguistics by Routledge (London and New York)

2015 Invited to write lead Opinion pieces directed towards large e-outreach on critical educational and social issues by the leading Indian television news channel NDTV, published online at: http://www.ndtv.com/author/rukmini-bhaya-nair

2013-1016 Principal Investigator of major grant (Rs50-70 lakh) awarded under the competitive scheme funded by the Indian Council of Social Sciences, ICSSR for a project on 'The Capabilities Approach to Education: Access, Equity and Quality' (November 2013 to December 2015, duration 2 + years)

2016 Awarded Senior Professorial Fellowship, Centre for the Study of Developing Societies (CSDS), (duration 1 year).

BOARDS, MEMBERSHIPS, COMMITTEES:

Editorial Board Member International Journal of Literary Semantics
(De Gruyter: Berlin/New York)
Editorial Board Member, Language and Dialogue (Walter Benjamins, New York)
Editorial Board Member: Psychology and Social Practice (e-journal)
Editorial Board Member, Journal of Multicultural Discourses
(Multilingual Matters, UK, 2006-2008)
Editorial Advisory Board, Macmillan Essential Dictionary (Macmillan, London 2004-2006)

Consulting Editor and Trustee, Biblio: A Review of Books (Biblio Trust: New Delhi)
Consultative Board Member, Journal of Pragmatics (Elseiver: Amsterdam)

President’s Nominee, Visitor, Kasaragod Central University Selection Committee
President’s Nominee, Visitor, Tamilnadu Central University Selection Committee

Senate Member, Visvesvaraya National Institute of Technology (VNIT), Nagpur 2007-10)
Senate Member, National Institute of Technology (NIT), Patna, 2010 to date

Member, Academic Council, Indian Institute of Advanced Study (2011-12, IIAS)
Member, Society of Fellows of the Indian Institute of Advanced Study nominated by the Central Government for Expertise in Education, Culture and the Sciences (2012-2016)

Expert Panel Member, The Book Show, ABC Radio Australia (2007-2010)
http://www.abc.net.au/rn/bookshow/

Advisory Board Member Drunken Boat: an online journal of art and literature, USA
http://www.drunkenboat.com/
Board Member, Academic Council, National Defence Academy (NDA) 2007-2009
Board Member, Asia-Pacific New Writing Partnership (APWP), Vice-Chair 2008-2009
Board Member and Incoming Chair, 2015 June onwards, Open Society Foundation, Sub-board for International Network Scholarship Programs 2011-to date

Member, Indian Assoc. of Commonwealth Language and Literature Studies (IACLALS)
Member, International Pragmatics Association (IPRA)

Life Member, Clare Hall College, Cambridge University
Life Member, Indian Linguistics Association (ILA)
Life Member, Indian Dravidian Linguistics Association. (IDJL)
Life Member, The Book Review (The Book Review Literary Trust: New Delhi)

Teaching Areas

Sample Courses Currently Taught:

1. LANGUAGE & COMMUNICATION
2. MIND, MACHINES AND LANGUAGE (initiated and developed)
3. LANGUAGE AND CULTURAL PERCEPTION (initiated and developed)
4. PHILOSOPHY OF LANGUAGE (initiated and developed)
5. ELEMENTS OF NARRATIVE STRUCTURE
6. GRAMMAR AND RHETORIC (initiated and developed)
7. TECHNOLOGY & CULTURE (initiated by Prof. Amulya Khurana, developed by me)
8. CRITICAL THEORY PLATO TO DERRIDA
9. MODERN FICTION
10. INDIAN WRITING IN ENGLISH
11. INDIAN POETRY IN ENGLISH
12. CREATIVE WRITING

Courses

Website