IIT Madras Director releases Two Books Authored by Humanities Dept Faculty

Chennai: Indian Institute of Technology Madras Director Prof. Bhaskar Ramamurthi on Monday released two books written by Professors from the Department of Humanities and Social Sciences. They were ‘Ecocriticism: Big Ideas and Practical Strategies’ by Dr. Swarnalatha Rangarajan, Professor, Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, IIT Madras and ‘Post Modern Literatures’ written by Dr. Avishek Parui, Assistant Professor, Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, IIT Madras.

Speaking on the occasion, Prof. Bhaskar Ramamurthi said,”I’m sure the books will be a great learning experience for students and will be a trigger for them to launch their writing careers. As an institution, our output is measured by publications and quality of publications.” Prof Bhaskar Ramamurthi also commended the Professors for taking this up.

Literary and cultural theories provide concise and lucid introductions to a range of key concepts and theorists in contemporary literary and cultural theory. Each book in the series presents students of humanities and social sciences exhaustive overviews of theories and theorists, while also introducing them to the mechanics of reading literary/cultural texts using critical tools.

Providing a brief overview of her book, Dr. Swarnalatha Rangarajan said, “Ecocriticism: Big Ideas and Practical Strategies provides a detailed introduction to the multifaceted and evolving discipline of ecocriticism. It locates ecocriticism within the varied domains of the Romantic movement, science, ethics, feminism and urban life, while tracing the evolution of the field from the coinage of the term to its new trajectories, through its various phases or ‘waves’. The book explores important concepts such as ecofeminism and material ecocriticism and points out the ways in which this literary/cultural theory engages with ‘our troubled environmental times’.

Highlight the work that has gone in to his book, Dr. Avishek Parui said,‘Post Modern Literatures’ provides an introduction to postmodern literatures by exploring its interactions with a range of subjects such as history, technology, media, gender, and the postcolonial. Postmodern readings have increasing significance in the ‘virtual and real worlds we inhabit’ today. Through a detailed study of selected texts, the book examines the features, trajectories and narratives of this literary movement, and showcases how the experience of reading postmodern literature can be enhanced by active engagement with the text.

Dr. Swarnalatha Rangarajan is a Professor of English at the Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, IIT Madras. She is the founding editor of the Indian Journal of Ecocriticism. Her work includes the co-edited volumes Ecocriticism of the Global South and Ecoambiguity, Community and Development: Toward a Politicized Ecocriticism and the forthcoming Routledge Handbook of Ecocriticism and Environmental Communication. She is also the co-translator of Mayilamma: The Life of a Tribal Eco-warrior published by Orient Blackswan this year.

Dr. Avishek Parui is Assistant Professor of English and Culture Studies at the Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, IIT Madras and Associate Fellow of the UK Higher Education Academy. His research interests include memory studies, masculinity studies and postmodernism. His work has appeared in South Asian Review; Short Fiction in Theory & Practice; Economic & Political Weekly; Katherine Mansfield Studies and The Routledge Encyclopedia of Modernism.