Texas Tech University

Kanika Batra

If I were to describe my research and teaching in a few words, “social movements” and “human rights” would be the most prominent. While my writing has always emphasized connections between literary forms and social movements, over the past few years my work has moved towards an expansive definition of the literary and the archival to include magazines, newsletters, pamphlets, manifestoes, campaign notes, and digital modes of communication. This is the subject of my most recent publication Worlding Postcolonial Sexualities: Publics, Counterpublics, Human Rights (Routledge, 2021), winner of the 2020 National Women's Studies Association-Routledge Prize in Subversive Histories, Feminist Futures.  

Extending my interest in black diaspora studies, I am currently in the planning stages of two book-length projects. The first is an account of civil and human rights movements by the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) in the United States and the South African Student Organization (SASO) in South Africa from the 1960s to the 1970s. The second, under contract with Cambridge University Press, is titled Re-visioning the Contemporary: 1968-2018. This work, focusing largely on Black, Asian, and minority ethnic writing, is Volume IV of A Feminist Literary History of Women's Writing in the British Isles: The Orlando Volumes (co-authored with Professor Maryse Jayasuriya).  Besides book-length studies, my published and forthcoming articles focus on African diaspora literature and drama, contemporary global fiction, and transnational feminist and queer studies.  

I supervise masters and doctoral students interested in comparative literature, globalization, postcolonial studies, feminist, and queer studies. I serve as external examiner for MA and PhD research submitted to universities in South Africa and India. The doctoral students I mentored over the past few years have secured academic and alt-ac positions at leading universities across the country. One of the most meaningful aspects of my work is Fulbright Foundation's sponsorship of international students and postdoctoral scholars to work under my mentorship at Texas Tech. I welcome queries about scholarly collaborations and research supervision from students and colleagues.


Significant Awards 

2021: TTU College of Arts and Sciences Excellence in Research Award in the Humanities. 

2020: The National Women's Studies Association-Routledge Book Prize in Subversive Histories, Feminist Futures for Worlding Postcolonial Sexualities: Publics, Counterpublics, Human Rights.  

2018: Abioseh Porter Best Article Prize of the African Literature Association for “Worlding Sexualities under Apartheid: From Gay Liberation to a Queer Afropolitanism” (Postcolonial Studies, Volume 19, 2016). Citation: “For an outstanding article in African literary studies published in a major peer-reviewed journal in the preceding calendar year.” 

2019: Killam Connection Grant, University of Alberta, Canada. PI: Katherine Binhammer, Team Member: Kanika Batra for “Visioning Orlando's Feminist Literary History Volumes:  From Digital Textbase to Narrative.”  

2018:  Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Yale University, Visiting Research Fellowship, PI: Kanika Batra

2016:  Harry Ransom Center for Research in the Humanities, UT Austin, Short-Term Research Fellowship, PI: Kanika Batra

2012: Texas Tech President's Book Award for Feminist Visions and Queer Futures in Postcolonial Drama.  



2021:Worlding Postcolonial Sexualities: Publics, Counterpublics, Human Rights, winner of the 2020 National Women's Studies Association-Routledge book prize in Subversive Histories, Feminist Futures, Routledge. 200 pages.  

2011:Feminist Visions and Queer Futures in Postcolonial Drama: Community, Kinship, and Citizenship. Routledge: New York, 2011. Paperback 2012. 178 pages. (Reviewed in the journals Interventions, South Asia Review, Women in Theatre, Theatre Journal, and The Cambridge Journal of Postcolonial Literary Enquiry)  

2001:Caribbean Poetry: Derek Walcott and Edward Brathwaite, for the course “New Literatures in English” offered by the Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU). New Delhi: IGNOU, 2001. 100 pages.  


Select Journal Articles  

2018: “Transporting Metropolitanism: Road-Mapping Feminist Solutions to Sexual Violence in Delhi.” Journal of Postcolonial Writing 54.3: 387-397.  

2017: “Polygamous Postcolonialism and Transnational Critique in Tess Onwueme's The Reign of Wazobia.” Meridians: Feminism, Race, Transnationalism 15.2: 330-352.  

2016: “Worlding Sexualities under Apartheid: From Gay Liberation to a Queer Afropolitanism.” Postcolonial Studies 19.3: 1-16.  

2016: “Creating a Locational Counterpublic: Manushi and the Articulation of Human Rights and Sexuality from Delhi, India.” Signs: Journal of Women in Culture and Society 42.1: 845-867.  


Public Facing Articles 

2021: “Love Letters and Legacies of Black Queer Self-Fashioning in South Africa,” Brittle Paper

2021: “Indian English Drama's Missing Female Gaze,” MARG: A Pathbreaking Arts Quarterly.  


Digital Humanities Research 

2021: “Gurpreet Kaur Bhatti,” Orlando 2.0: Women's Writing in the British Isles, Cambridge University Press-University of Alberta, 5345 words.  

2021: “Seni Seneviratne,” Orlando 2.0: Women's Writing in the British Isles, Cambridge University Press-University of Alberta, 5000 words.  



2021:Book Podcast on Worlding Postcolonial Sexualities for the New Books Network  


Doctoral Committee Supervision and Placements 

2021: Kenna Neitch, PhD (English), “Indigenous Persistence: Gender, Genre, and Resistance in the Americas.” Heanon Wilkins Faculty Fellow and Visiting Assistant Professor in the Department of Global Studies at Miami University, Oxford, Ohio

2020: MaryAnn Widerburg, PhD (English), “Literary, Film, and New Media Responses to Post-9/11 American Representations of Terrorism and Fundamentalism,” Senior Academic Advisor, Tech Transfer Accelaration Program, Texas Tech University

2019: Kerry Manzo, PhD (English), “‘When We See It, We Shall Be Happy': The Mbari Movement, Queer Emergence, and Counterpublics in the Production of West African Literature,” Visiting Assistant Professor of English at Purchase College SUNY, ACLS Pauline Yu Fellow 2021, and ACLS Dissertation Completion Fellowship 2018

2018: Joya Mannan, PhD (English), “Post-Colonial Adaptations and Appropriations of Shakespeare in the Indian and Bengal Regions,” Associate Director of Strategic Marketing and Communications, Engineering Department at Texas A&M University

2018 onwards: Bhawana Pillai, PhD (English), “Writing the Self: Women's Autobiographies from South Asia, the Middle East, and North Africa,” in progress


2021: Chair, Subcommittee on First Book Award, African Literature Association (ALA) 

2019-2020: Chair, Forum on South Asian and Diasporic Literatures, Modern Language Association (MLA) 

2017-2020: American Council of Learned Societies (ACLS)-Mellon Dissertation Fellowship reviewer 

2016-2018: Modern Languages Association (MLA), Elections Committee Member 


Comparative Literature, Globalization, and Translation

Email: kanika.batra@ttu.edu
Phone: (806) 834-1246
Office: 479