Manisha Basu

Associate Professor of English and Center for African Studies


Ph.D. University of Pittsburgh

Teaching Interests

Postcolonial Theory and Literatures, Nationalism, Secularism, Globalization, African Literatures, Literary Theory and Cultural Studies, South Asian Literatures and Cultures.


Postcolonial Literature in English, Critical Approaches to Literature, Introduction to Criticism and Research, Introduction to Modern African Literature, Modern African Fiction.

Research Interests

Postcolonial Theory and Literatures, Nationalism and Philology, Secularism, Globalization, African Literatures, Literary Theory and Cultural Studies, South Asian Literatures and Cultures, Language and Imperialism.


Post-Colonial, Theory & Criticism

Work(s) in Progress

The Rhetoric of Hindu India: 1984-2004 traces the emergence of a distinctive Anglophone journalistic mode of narration that in a late twentieth-century Indian context galvanized the rise of an urban right-wing Hindu ideology known as metropolitan Hindutva. The principal contention of the book is that the journalistic narrative system of metropolitan Hindutva is optimized in a telematic tempo of transmission and control that seeks to violently subordinate difference to a uniform conceptualization of Hindu national culture. Despite the muscular nationalist rhetoric of its narration, metropolitan Hindutva is in fact the vehicle for a new Hindu-Anglian imperial fantasy that has radically transformed the political, cultural and economic template of the secular-postcolonial Indian polity.



  • The Rhetoric of Hindu India: Language and Urban Nationalism. New Delhi: Cambridge University Press, 2016.

Book Contributions

  • Basu, Manisha. "'Rang de Basanti': The Solvent Brown and other Imperial Colors." Bollywood and Globalization: Indian Popular Cinema, Nation, and Diaspora. Ed. Rini Bhattacharya Mehta. London: Anthem, 2010. 93-110.

Journal Articles

  • "The Play of Living Creation: Time and Finitude in Tagore’s Humanism." Comparative Literature 65.1 (2013): 46-61.
  • "A Matter of Light and Shade: Fiction and Criticism in R.K. Narayan’s Malgudi." boundary 2 40.2 (2013): 215-238.
  • "A Battle of the Books: Linguistic Antagonisms and the Crisis of Postcolonial Secularism." The Comparatist 37.3 (2013): 105-121.
  • "The Stuff that Realisms are Made on: R.K. Narayan’s Painter of Signs." South Asian Review 32.1 (2012):
  • "Loving and Leaving: The Ethics of Postcolonial Pain in Chimamanda Adichie’s Purple Hibiscus." Ariel: A Review of International English Literature 43.1 (2012): 67-86.
  • "Postcoloniality and the Language of Metro-polar Globalization." Journal of Postcolonial Cultures and Societies 2 (2010): <>.
  • Basu, Manisha. "The Hamartia of Light and Shade: Susan Sontag in the Digital Age." PostModern Culture 16.3 (2006): 09/03/2015. <>.
  • Basu, Manisha. "Aiming the Canon: National Emergency and the Errant Courses of the Literary." Theory and Event 8.1 (2005): <>.


  • Rev. of Becoming Imperial Citizens: Indians in the Late Victorian Empire by Sukanya Banerjee. Modern Fiction Studies Vol. 57.4 (2011): 786-789.

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