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Social Science and Public Policy

Audacious Raconteurs of Colonial India: A Discussion with Leela Prasad

February 23, 2021 at 12:30pm2:00pm EST

Virtual (See event details)

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Moynihan Institute of Global Affairs

South Asia Center presents

Audacious Raconteurs of Colonial India: A Discussion with Leela Prasad


The Audacious Raconteur (Cornell University Press, 2020) engages history, anthropology, literary studies, and religion to argue that even the most hegemonic circumstances cannot suppress “audacious raconteurs”: skilled storytellers who fashion narrative spaces that allow themselves to remain sovereign and beyond subjugation.  Four Indian narrators of different castes and religious backgrounds who lived in colonial India—an ayah, a lawyer, an archaeologist, and a librarian—show that the audacious raconteur is a necessary ethical and artistic figure in human experience.


Joanne Punzo Waghorne, Professor of Religion at Syracuse University, will talk with Dr. Prasad about her book and its contributions.

Leela Prasad

Professor, Religious Studies

Duke University

Leela Prasad is Professor of Religious Studies at Duke University.  Her primary interests are the anthropology of ethics, with a focus on South Asia, colonialism & decoloniality, prison pedagogy & Gandhi, and religion & modernity. Her work is at the intersections of religious studies, anthropology, history and literature.


Co-sponsored by the Department of Religion.

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For more information, please contact Emera Bridger Wilson, or to request additional accommodations, please contact Morgan Bicknell,

This event was first published on January 15, 2021 and last updated on February 18, 2021.

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