SWETHA ANTONY, Assistant Professor, PhD (EFLU, Hyderabad)

Assistant Professor

Office No: 45, Arts Faculty Building, University of Delhi, North Campus

Preferred Contact hours: By appointment

E: mail: swetha.antony.p@gmail.com

PhD (The English and Foreign Languages University, Hyderabad), MA (University of Kerala 2008), BA (University of Kerala 2006)



Though strictly speaking I am a generalist whose fingers are dipped in multiple fields of literature and humanities, my doctoral research work is broadly oriented towards postcolonial theory and literatures. The use of languages by the Indian writers in English is the point where I begin as a scholar. I engage with the way English is creatively understood and interpreted by the Indian poets to hold within the fluid boundaries of the idea of a nation or a national sense of being and what it excludes and includes in the process of making an identity. My doctoral work is on the poetry of Kamala Das, linking her life and writing, arguing that she is a cosmopolitan who has internalized the various nuances of the term with the borderlines and the margins moving from one space only to merge into another. I use cosmopolitanism as a theoretical tool to understand her ‘play’ of signs within the post-colonial space. The evolution of Indian English Literature into a heterogeneous and inclusive entity such as Indian Literatures in English continues to be the object of my critical enquiry. 

The poetics of exile as articulated by writers in the spectrum of New Literatures in English continues to fascinate me and I am currently exploring the notion of third space/ culture as represented in global literature and popular culture. My foray into the larger impact of Portuguese colonialism and the origin and evolution of the Latin Catholic community in Kerala has led me to an engagement with the concept of tiNai to understand the presence of geographical spaces in the literary, cultural and performative traditions of South India. My research extends into areas such as Food Studies, Environmental Humanities and Film Studies.  

Areas of Interest/ Research:

Kamala Das Studies, Indian Poetry in English, Global Literature, Theories of the Diaspora, Cosmopolitanism and Third Space/Culture, Film Criticism, Environmental Humanities 

Courses Taught:


Eighteenth Century British Literature, British Romantic Poetry, Twentieth Century Poetry and Drama, Literature and Gender, New Literatures in English, American Literature, Ancient Greek and Latin Literature in Translation, and Literature and the Visual Arts in Europe. 

Representative Publications:

Books (Edited)

Beyond the Superficial: Making Sense of Food in a Globalized World, Oxford: Inter-Disciplinary Press, 2016. (edited with Elizabeth M. Schmidt)

Chapters in Books

“Transcending the (Generic) Self: Liminality in Merrily Weisbord’s The Love Queen of Malabar: Memoir of a Friendship with Kamala Das”, Explorations in Critical Humanities: A Collection of Essays (ed.)Sreenath Muraleedharan K and Devi K, India: Viva Books, 2017.

“Introduction”, (co-authored with Elizabeth M. Schmidt) Beyond the Superficial: Making Sense of Food in a Globalized World, Oxford: Inter-Disciplinary Press, 2016. 

“Self as a Trace in Postcolonial Discourse: An Analysis of Kamala Das’ Poetry”, Gender and Commonwealth Studies (ed) Anuradha Kunda and Arnab Bhattacharya, Kolkata: Books Way, 2015.

“The Soul that Knows How to Sing: A Post Structuralist Analysis of Kamala Das’s Poetry”, Indian Poetry in English: Critical Essays (ed) Zinia Mitra, New Delhi: PHI Learning Private Limited, 2012. 


 “Ventriloquing the Vernacular: the Contexts to Indian English Writing” in the peer reviewed journal International Proceedings of Economics Development and Research: Language, Medias and Culture (Vol 33) Ed: by Feng Tao published by IACSIT Press, Singapore. 

“Identity as a Skein of Memory, History and Violence in Micheal Ondaatje’s Anil’s Ghost.” Literary Quest, Volume 1 Issue 11, April 2015