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Drawing from vast transcontinental archival resources in this talk titled “Mourning Matla and Severing Tsavo”, Amrita DasGupta will discuss the effects of port building on mangrove ecosystems expanding from India to British East Africa.

The talk will revisit discussions on the colonial attitude of reaping benefits by controlling nature and will argue, what initially seemed as colonial attempts at infrastructural expansion, were rather an added opportunity at controlling business across the Indian Ocean networks by creating buffer zones.

About the speaker

Amrita DasGupta 

Amrita DasGupta is a PhD Candidate at the Centre of Gender Studies, School of Oriental and African Studies (University of London). She is a Visiting Research Student at the King’s India Institute and a Guest Teacher at the London School of Economics.

Her doctoral research deals with transnational trafficking-in-humans in the mangrove frontiers of the Indian Ocean World. Methodologically, her research aims to decolonize the existing qualitative research practices through arts-based study.

A short glimpse of the same was witnessed at the her exhibition “Arts in Climate Crisis: Lines and Colours of Trauma and Hope in Sex Work” at the 8th March Women’s Day events at SOAS. As a SOAS Digital Ambassador Amrita regularly writes for the SOAS blog. Her work has been published by Gitanjali and Beyond, Economic and Political Weekly.

This event held as an engagement output of the Cities, Climate, and Capital in the Greater Indian Ocean World Research Group.


Event details

Old Committee Room (K2.30)
King's Building
Strand Campus, Strand, London, WC2R 2LS