P. Sanal Mohan
Working in KCHR Since
• PhD in History (2007) Mahatma Gandhi University, Kottayam, Kerala. Thesis titled ‘Imagining Equality: Modernity and Social Transformation of Lower Castes in Colonial Kerala
• MPhil in History (1987) Department of History, University of Calicut, Kerala. Thesis titled ‘Role of Peasantry in the National Movement in Malabar’
• Masters in History (1984) University of Calicut, Kerala
• Bachelor of Arts in Economics (1982) Nirmalagiri College affiliated to University of Calicut, Kerala
• Professor, School of Social Sciences, Mahatma Gandhi University, Kerala
• 2017 (October to 2018 June) Smuts Visiting Fellows in Commonwealth Studies, Clare Hall and Centre of South Asian Studies, University of Cambridge
• 2015 (1 August- 29 November).Postdoctoral Visiting Fellow Max Planck Institute for the Study of Religious and Ethnic Diversity, Gottingen, Germany.
• 2013(April). Postdoctoral Visiting Fellow Max Planck Institute for the Study of Religious and Ethnic Diversity, Gottingen, Germany.
• September 2012-2014. Fellow, Social Sciences Research Council New York in the Programme of New Directions in the Study of Prayers.
• 2011 October-November. Visiting Faculty Associate, Centre for the Advanced Study of India, University of Pennsylvania, The USA.
• 2008 (28January-19 December). Graduate School Postdoctoral Fellow in Colonial and Postcolonial Studies and ICIS/RDI Visiting Scholar, Emory University Atlanta, Georgia, The USA.
• 2007 (February). Ford Foundation Visiting Fellow in Cultural Studies CIEFL Hyderabad
• 2004 (3 September-2 December). Honorary Research Associate in the Social Anthropology Programme of Massey University, New Zealand.
• 2002-2005 (28May2002– April2005) Fellow in History, Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta, India.
• 2002 (6 January – 28 March). Charles Wallace Visiting Fellow in History at Centre for South Asian Studies, SOAS, University of London.
• 1993-2002 Senior Lecturer in Ethnography at the School of Social Sciences, Mahatma Gandhi University, Kerala, India (rejoined from April 2005).
• 7 July 1990- 93 November 1993 Lecturer in History at Government College Kasaragod, under the Department of Collegiate Education, Government of Kerala, India.
Professional Milestones/ Achievements
• Smuts Visiting Fellowship in Commonwealth Studies, University of Cambridge, 2017-18
• Foreign Postdoc Max Planck Institute for the Study of Religious and Ethnic Diversity, Gottingen, Germany, 2015
• Social Sciences Research Council New York, Research Award in the Programme, New• Foreign Postdoc Max Planck Institute for the Study of Religious and Ethnic Diversity, Gottingen, Germany. 2013
• Directions in the Study of Prayers, 2012- 2014.
• 2009-2010: Endangered Archives Programme Grant from The British Library, London for creating Digital Archives of Dalit and Lower Caste Social Movements in Kerala.
• 2008: Postdoctoral Fellowship: Graduate School Postdoctoral Fellowship in Colonial and Postcolonial Studies and ICIS/RDI Visiting Scholarship, Emory University Atlanta, Georgia, The USA.
• 2002: Charles Wallace Visiting Fellowship in History, SOAS, University of London, 2002
• 1987: Research Fellowship from University Grants Commission, New Delhi.
• Since March 2010 to October 2017, Honorary Director, Inter University Centre for Social Sciences Research and Extension, Mahatama Gandhi University Kottayam, Kerala
• Director Extended Workshop on Social History for Young Historians, CODESRIA Dakar/SEPHIS Amsterdam, Dakar, Senegal 2-13 November 2009
• Member Executive Council, MIDS Chennai, 2012 to 2014
• Member executive Council, Kerala Council of Historical Research, 2013 till date
• Member Governing Council CREST Calicut from
Ethnography | Social History | Modernity/Colonial Modernity | Social Movements| Dalits and Christianity| Comparative Histories | Social memory and History of Mentality.
Research Projects Completed
• 2015 Praxis Intervention Research among Dalit Christians and other Marginalized communities in Manjadikkari, (ICSSR New Dehi, Report Submitted and Accepted)
• 2014. From the Lord’s Prayer to Invoking Slavery through prayers: Religious Practices of Dalits in India, paper presented in the Workshop on New Directions in the Study of Prayer, SSRC New York,(Report submitted and accepted)
• 2011 ‘Creation of digital archives of social reform movements among the Dalit and lower caste groups in Kerala, South West India’ Funded Endangered Archives Programme, The British Library, London the UK. February 2010- February 2011(report submitted and accepted)
• 2000 ‘Dynamics of Social Transformation in Village: A Case Study of Naduvannur Village in Kozhikode District, Kerala’. Funded by Kerala Research Programme for Local Level Development, Centre for Development Studies, Trivandrum, Kerala, India
Archival Research Experience
• Survey and Collection of Primary Documents related to Dalit Religious and Social Movements of Kerala from 1850’s onwards as part of the Endangered Archives Programme of the British Library, London. February 2010-January 2011.
• Kerala State Archives, Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala.
• India Office Records, the British Library, London.
• Council of World Mission Archives, SOAS, University of London.
• Church Missionary Society Archives, Special Collections, University of Birmingham.
• Salvation Army International Headquarters Archives, Denmark Hill, London.
• Bodleian Library Special Collections, University of Oxford.
• August 2015. Modernity of Slavery: Struggles against Caste Inequality in Colonial Kerala, Oxford University Press, New Delhi.
• August 2015, (Co-authored with Vinil Paul) Viswasavum Vimochanavum: Kyppetta Habel. Tiruvalla, CSS, 2015(Malayalam)
• 2017, Oru Gramam Nooru Ormakal (With P. Madhu et.al.eds.)IUCSSRE, MG University and Green Line Publications, Thiruvananthapuram, 2017 (Malayalam)
• Creation of Social Space through Prayers Among Dalits in Kerala, India, in Prayer and Politics (ed.) Peter van der Veer, Routledge, London, 2017
• ‘Social Space, Civil Society and Dalit Agency in Twentieth Century Kerala’ in a Dalit Studies (ed) Ramnarayan Rawat, K.Satyanarayana, Duke University Press, 2016
• ‘Religion, Social Space and Identity: Prathyaksha Raksha Daiva Sabha and the Making of Cultural Boundaries in Twentieth Century Kerala’, in Subhadra Channa Mitra and Joan P. Mencher (ed) Life as a Dalit, New Delhi, Sage, 2013.
• ‘Caste and Accumulation of Capital’ in Oxford India Anthology of Malayalam Dalit Writing, M. Dasan (et al) New Delhi, Oxford University Press,2012
• ‘Narrativizing the History of Slave Suffering’ in K.Satyanarayana and Susie Tharu, eds. No Alphabet in Sight New Dalit Writing From South India Dossier I; Tamil and Malayalam. New Delhi, Penguin Books, 2011pp534-555, New Delhi.
• "Searching for old Histories":Social Movements and the Project of Writing History in Twentieth-Century Kerala in Raziuddin Aquil and Partha Chatterjee (ed). History in the Vernacular New Delhi, Permanent Black 2008 pp 357-390
• Dynamics of Social transformation in a Kerala billage: A case Study of Naduvannur Village in Kerala,in K.N. Nair and Vineetha Menon (ed). Social Change in Kerala; Insights from Micro Level Studies, Delhi Daanish Books,2007.
• ‘Theorising History in the Context of Social Movements: Challenges to the Reigning Paradigms of History?,’ inFelix Wilfred and Jose D. Maliekkal (eds) Historiography Today (Madras University, Chennai, 2002), pp 99-110.
• ‘Caste and the Problem of Accumulation of Capital’,in T.M. Yesudasan (ed)Dalit Svatvavum Adhikarathinte Prasnavum (Dalit Identity and the Problem of Power), Kottayam, Almond Books 1998.
• World System Theory in TR Venugopalan (ed) History and Theory, National Seminar Papers, (Trichur: Department of History, Government College: 1997)
Articles in Referred Journals
• 2017 Women and Religiosity: Dalit Christianity in Kerala, Economic and Political Weekly Vol. 52, Issue No. 42-43, 28 October 2017,pp50-57.
• 2015 Creation of Social Space through Prayers Among Dalits in Kerala, India, Journal of Religious and Political Practice, DOI:10.1080/20566093.2016.1085735
• ‘Religion, Social Space and Identity: Prathyaksha Raksha Daiva Sabha and the Making of Cultural Boundaries in Twentieth Century Kerala’, South Asia n.s. Vol. XXVIII. no.1, April, 2005. pp.35-63.
• ‘Narrativising Oppression and Suffering: Theorizing Slavery’, South Asia Research (Vol. 26 No1, February, 2006, pp.5-40)
• ‘Dalit Discourse and the Evolving New Self: Contest and Strategies’, Review of Development and Change. Vol. IV. No.1 January-June 1999 1-24 Madras institute of Development Studies.
Selected Book Reviews
• ‘Global Capital and Peripheral Labour: The History and Political Economy of Plantation Workers in India’, by K. Ravi Raman: London, Routledge, 2010 in Journal of Agrarian Change, Vol. 14,Issue 1,2013, pp.155-9
• Review of ‘Slavery in South Asia’ edited by Indrani Chatterjee and Richard Eaton, Bloomington, Indiana University Press in The Medieval History Journal,2009:12:141
• Reconsidering Untouchability: Chamars and Dalit History in North Indiaby Ramnarayan Rawat Bloomington, Indiana University Press, Bloomington, forthcoming in Studies in History, 2014
Selected Conference Papers
• 2017 Narratives of Transformation: Understanding Dalit Christianity in Kerala, India Erfurt University Germany, 4-7 July, 2017
• 2015. Workshop at SSRC, New York: Paper presented titled ‘Prayers as life affirming practices: Dalit Christianity in Kerala’.
• 2013. From the Lord’s Prayer to Invoking Slavery through Prayers: Religious Practices of Dalits in India, paper presented in the Max Planck institute for the study of religious and ethnic diversity 29th April
• 2013. From the Lord’s Prayer to Invoking Slavery through prayers: Religious Practices of Dalits in India, paper presented in the Workshop on New Directions in the Study of Prayer, SSRC New York, May 16 – 17
• 2013. From the Lord’s Prayer to Invoking Slavery through prayers: Religious Practices of Dalits in India, paper presented in the Workshop on New Directions in the Study of Prayer, SSRC New York, October 4 – 5
• 2013. Social and Religious Experience of Dalit Christians in Kerala: A Historical Analysis, paper presented in South Asia Research and Information Institute, Dallas, and Asian Studies, Southern Methodist University, US, September 27 - 28
• 2012. Coordinated a panel on Dalit Social Movements: Questions of theory and knowledge production at IIS 40th World Congress Delhi16-19 February 2012
• 2012. Workshop on New Directions in the Study of Prayer, SSRC New York, October 5 – 6
• 2011. ‘Subaltern in Kerala: Subaltern Studies in Translation “ in paper presented in the “Postcolonial Translation: Multi-disciplinary Perspectives from South Asia” Workshop Jointly Organized by the Postcolonial Studies network in association with Newcastle University (UK), SOAS (UK), Delhi University, and Jawaharlal Nehru University January 7-9, 2011.
• 2011. ‘Struggles for dignity, respect and inclusion: Reflections on Social Movements in Kerala’, Paper presented in the workshop on Development and Social Movements in India 29- 31, Centre for Political Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University New Delhi, March 2011.
• 2011. ‘Caste Identities in Contemporary Kerala’, Paper presented at CSDS Delhi April 11, 2011
• 2011. A conference on Love and Revolution at Nehru Memorial Museum at New Delhi, Jan 20-22, Impossibility of Family
• 2011. “Colonialism Social Movements and the Creation of Documents: Exploring the Archive of Dalit and other lower caste groups in Kerala, South West India”, paper presented at the Workshop on Globalization and Preservation organized by Goldsmith College London, 3-8 September
• 2011. Modernity of Slavery: Studies against Caste inequality in 20th century India, November 2011 Centre for the Advanced Study of India, University of Pennsylvania
• 2010. ‘Social Sciences Practice and Cultures of Resistance: Situating Dalit Studies” presented in thestudy week, 'Dalit Challenges and Disciplinary Practices' at the Indian Institute of Advanced Study from July 19- 25, 2010
• 2010. ‘Endangered Archives of Dalit and Lower caste Social Movements of twentieth century Kerala’ paper presented in the National Seminar and Workshop on the Local History Archives Department of History, University of Calicut Novemebr1-3, 2010
• 2009. Problematising Dalit History’ paper presented in a three day national lectures series on ‘Dalit in ‘Historical Perspective’ March 24 2009 Department of History Sree Sankaracharya University of Sanskrit, Kalady
• 2009. ‘Understanding Subaltern World View and Culture: Some Critical Issues in Historiography’ Department of History Sree Sankaracharya University of Sanskrit, Kalady, March 25, 2009
• 2009. ‘Social Science Practice and Cultures of Resistance: Situating Dalit Studies’ Department of History Sree Sankaracharya University of Sanskrit, Kalady March 26, 2009
• 2009. ‘Struggles against Inequalities: Dalit Movements in Early-Twentieth-Century Kerala’ paper presented in the Papiya Ghosh Memorial Annual Workshop-cum-Seminar at The Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta (CSSSC),and Papiya Ghosh Memorial Fund (supported by the Tata Social Welfare Trust) on ‘Minority Cultures’, at CSSS Calcutta at, Kolkata, 25-26 June 2009.
• 2009. ‘From Slaves to Human Beings: Struggles for Citizenship in Late Nineteenth Century Kerala, India’ Extended Workshop on Social History for Young Historians, Dakar, Senegal, November 2, 2009
• 2009. ‘Social Movements and Citizenship: Challenges from the Margins in Contemporary India’ Extended Workshop on Social History for Young Historians, Dakar, Senegal November 6, 2009’
• 2009. ‘Public Sphere and Citizenship Postcolonial Challenges’ Extended Workshop on Social History for Young Historians, Dakar, Senegal November 11, 2009
• 2008. Ethnography of a “Civilizing Mission”: Situating the Missionaries and Dalits in Twentieth Century Kerala paper presented in the Postcolonial Studies Seminar Department of History, Emory University, Atlanta, April 23, 2008
• 2008. ‘Social Space, Civil Society and Dalit Agency in Twentieth Century Kerala’ Paper Presented in the Dalit Studies Conference, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, the USA. December 2-5, 2008.
• 2008. ‘Prathyaksha Raksha Daiva Sabha and the Struggles against Inequalities in twentieth Century Kerala’ Paper Presented in the ICIS Fellows Seminar, Institute of Critical International Studies, Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia, and November 4, 2008
• 2008. ‘Social Memory of Slavery in Kerala’ Paper presented in the South Asian Studies Group, Emory University, Atlanta September 18, 2008
• 2008. Missionary Discourses and Constructions of Slavery in the Nineteenth and Twentieth century Kerala Paper presented in the South Asia Centre, Minnesota University, and Minneapolis, USA
• 2008. Ethnography of a “Civilizing Mission”: Situating the Missionaries and Dalits in Twentieth Century Kerala, Paper presented in the Annual Conference on South Asian Studies, Wisconsin-Madison University, The USA, 2008
• 2006. Missionary Discourses and Slave Narratives in Colonial Kerala: An Ethnographic Encounter Paper presented in the International Conference on Christianity and the State in Asia Complicity and Conflict ARI, National University of Singapore, 10-12 January 2007
• 2004. ‘Missionary Discourses on Development and Change: Exploring the Interface of protestant Missionary work and Lower Castes in Nineteenth and Twentieth century Kerala’. Paper presented in the development Studies Seminar in Massey University, New Zealand 23 September 2004
• 2004. ‘Questions of Identity and Modernity among the Lower castes in colonial and Post colonial Kerala.’ paper presented in the Social Anthropology Programme of Massey University, 18 November 2004.
• 2004. ‘Narrating Development: Representing the Social world of the Lower Castes’,presented in the Annual Conference of Australian Anthropological Society on Moving Anthropology: Motion, Emotion& knowledge at the University of Melbourne 28 September-1 October 2004.
• 2003. ‘Between Memory and History: Slave Narratives from Nineteenth and Twentieth Century Kerala’, Presented in the Second Uganda Cultural Studies Workshop organized by CBR Kampala, Roskelde University and CSSS Calcutta, August 12- 16, 2003 at Kampala, Uganda.
• 2002. ‘Narrativising Oppression and Suffering: Theorizing Slavery’ Seminar presented at the South Asia Centre, School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London, January 2002.
• 2002. ‘Caste Histories and Identity Formation’. Seminar Presented in the Department of History, University of London, March 2002
• 2001. Presented a paper on World System theory as Resource Person in the State Level Seminar on Neo-Liberalism, Globalization and World System Theory on 22 February 2001, Department of History Mar Athanasius College, Kothamangalam, Kerala.
• 2001. Lectured as Resource Person on Recent Trends in Modern Indian Historiography in the Refresher Course in History, Department of History, Mangalore University, 20/10/2001
• 2000. ‘Caste Identities in Contemporary Kerala’ Paper presented in the UGC National Seminar on Social Identities and Political Transformation in India, Department of Political Science, Nagarjuna University, Guntur, AP. March 17-19 2000
• 2000. Theorizing History in the Context of Social Movements: Challenges to the Reigning Paradigms of History?, Paper presented in the conference on ‘Religiosity of the Marginalized and Social Transformation’ Department of Christian Studies, University of Madras 7-8 November 2000
• 2000. Coordinated the Workshop on ‘Subaltern Social Movements and the Challenge of Globalization and Cultural Nationalism’ along with the National Council of Churches in India, at Thiruvalla 27-29 October 2000
• 2000. ‘Hegemonic Cultures and Cultures of Hegemony’, paper presented in the Cultural Studies Workshop organized by Vikas Adhyayan Kendra, Mumbai at Wagamon 20-22 October 2000
• 1999. Equality as Colonial Modernity: Nineteenth Century Missionary Perceptions paper presented in the National Seminar on ”The Challenge of Dr. Ambedkar on Missions in India” Jeevan Jyothi Hyderabad, 27-29 August 1999.
• 1999. ‘Equality as Colonial Modernity: Nineteenth Century Missionary Perceptions’, Paper presented in the Cultural Studies Workshop organized by the Centre for Studies in Social Sciences Calcutta and Roskilde University Copenhagen and Basic Research Group, Kampala, Uganda at Khajuraho (India) 1999.• 1999. ‘Development and Marginalisation: Dalit Experience of Colonial and Postcolonial Kerala’, Paper presented in the International Seminar on Alternative Histories and Non-Written Sources: New Perspectives from the South by SEPHIS Amsterdam and THOA La Paz, Bolivia May 10-15, 1999.
• 1999. ‘Caste and Identity Formation: Shifting Boundaries of Politics in Colonial and Post-Colonial Kerala’, Paper presented at the workshop on Caste and Religious Identities in South India, Department of Politics and Public Administration, University of Madras, Chennai. 1999.
• 1999. ‘Trajectories of Dominance and Subordination: Conceptualising the Subaltern in Colonial and Post-colonial Kerala’, Souvenir, Indian History Congress session at Calicut University, 1999.
• 1999. Contributing Researcher in the Workshop on Village Re- Survey Studies 6-7 May 1999.
• 1998 Religion Social Space and Identity: Construction of Boundary in Colonial Kerala. Paper in the Conference of Subaltern Historians, Giri Institute of Development Studies, Lucknow 3-5 January 1998
• 1998 Coordinated and chaired the session on Globalization in the ‘International Conference on Europe and South Asia 500 Years’ Organized by Institute of Social Sciences, New Delhi at Calicut 16-20 May 1998.