Srinivas’ impressive study argues for new visions of pluralism that hinge upon an engaged cosmopolitanism."

Jeffrey M. Brackett, Ball State University

Oxford Journals -

The Journal of Hindu Studies



Curried Cultures

Globalization, Food, and South Asia (California Studies in Food and Culture)

University of California press


Although South Asian cookery and gastronomy has transformed contemporary urban foodscape all over the world, social scientists have paid scant attention to this phenomenon. Curried Cultures-a wide-ranging collection of essays-explores the relationship between globalization and South Asia through food, covering the cuisine of the colonial period to the contemporary era, investigating its material and symbolic meanings.

Curried Cultures challenges disciplinary boundaries in considering South Asian gastronomy by assuming a proximity to dishes and diets that is often missing when food is a lens to investigate other topics. The book's established scholarly contributors examine food to comment on a range of cultural activities as they argue that the practice of cooking and eating matter as an important way of knowing the world and acting on it.

Winged Faith

Rethinking Globalization and Religious Pluralism through the Sathya Sai Movement

Columbia University Press


The Sathya Sai global civil religious movement incorporates Hindu and Muslim practices, Buddhist, Christian, and Zoroastrian influences, and "New Age"-style rituals and beliefs. Shri Sathya Sai Baba, its charismatic and controversial leader, attracts several million adherents from various national, ethnic, and religious backgrounds. In a dynamic account of the Sathya Sai movement's explosive growth, Winged Faith argues for a rethinking of globalization and the politics of identity in a religiously plural world.

This study considers a new kind of cosmopolitanism located in an alternate understanding of difference and contestation. It considers how acts of "sacred spectating" and illusion, "moral stakeholding" and the problems of community are debated and experienced. A thrilling study of a transcultural and transurban phenomenon that questions narratives of self and being, circuits of sacred mobility, and the politics of affect, Winged Faith suggests new methods for discussing religion in a globalizing world and introduces readers to an easily critiqued yet not fully understood community.

Forthcoming: Wasteland

Bangalore city is on the cutting edge--the center of the technology revolution, the home of the knowledgeware industry in India. But it is also a city on the edge in many other ways, with rolling blackouts, regular drought, traffic jams, unpassable roads, stressful work and large scale consumption spaces. Based on deep ethnography, Srinivas argues that in neoliberal Bangalore the concept of city planning is no longer sustainable without a social critique, and that the project of the modernist Indian city has failed.

Grounded in her work as an architect, planner and anthropologist, and her expertise on the city, Srinivas controversially champions greater social and philosophical analysis within the field to challenge the political naivety and disciplinary illusions of the traditional approaches to urban planning. Creatively exploring the “unplanning” of Bangalore over the past two decades, she focuses her interrogation on the questions of knowledge as the entry point to unearthing the “nocturnal economies” and “abandoned geographies” of the city.

Together she argues they gesture to a “philosophy of annulment” that stifles the ethos of planning leading to a questionable urban ethic.