Areas of Interest & Expertise
- History of Education and Pedagogy
- Trajectories of Liberal democratic politics in South Asia
Akash Bhattacharya is a historian and has worked on a range of themes including history of education and pedagogy in colonial India, colonial vernacular literature, and the politics of modern history writing.
His doctoral research focused on the social origins of Liberal education in colonial India. He has increasingly taken an interest in policy research in education, especially its interface with labor policy.
An avid follower of Indian politics, he also writes commentaries on topical issues including social movements, secularism, state repression, and so on, in addition to the politics of education.
Publications and Writings
- ‘Urbanizing Uttarpara: Philanthropy, Improvement, Education (c.1846 — c.1865)’, Education and the Urban in India, Working Paper Series, Vol. 10 (2021).
- ‘Pathshalas, Schools and the Advent of Primary Education in Bengal’, in Rethinking the Local in Indian History: Perspectives from Eastern India edited by Kaustubh Sengupta and Tista Das (Ranikhet: Permanent Black, 2021). (Forthcoming)
- ‘Pedagogic Limits of the Colonial State: The School Teacher in Colonial Bengal (c.1854 – c.1905)’, Proceedings of the Indian History Congress 78, (December 2017): 717 – 725.
- ‘The Past in Vrindavanlal Verma’s Present: Writing Historical Fiction in Colonial India’, Proceedings of the Indian History Congress 73, (December 2013): 961 – 966.
- ‘What the Outsider Discourse in the Anti-CAA Movement Hides’, Newsclick, 8 September 2020.
- ‘Education 2020: Pandemics and Pushbacks, Repression and Resistance’, Groundxero, 7 January 2020.
- ‘The Isolation of JNU’, Groundxero, 1 January 2020.
- ‘The Battles Against Modi: What an Industrial Strike Teaches Us’, Economic and Political Weekly, Vol. 49, No. 23, 7 June 2014, pp. 15 – 18.
- The Mandir Masjid Debate in Ayodhya: The Histories that Matter, Arek Rakam 8, no. 17, 1 November 2020.
Book Project, tentatively titled In the Name of the People: The Origins of Public Education in India