Centre for Internet & Society

Dr. Nishant Shah will give a talk on 'Stories and Histories of Internet in India' at the Centre for Internet and Society's office in Bangalore on March 6, 2015 at 6 p.m. Please join us for tea and coffee before the lecture at 5.30 p.m.


Update: The video recording of the lecture can be accessed here.


Introducing the first research initiative at the Researchers at Work programme in the Centre for Internet and Society, Professor Nishant Shah wrote:

“Although many disciplines, organisations and interventions in various areas deal with internet technologies, there has been very little work in documenting the polymorphous growth of internet technologies and their relationship with society in India... We wanted to first propose that the Internet is not a monolithic object that exists in the same way across geographies and social borders. It is necessary to approach the Internets, as plural, available in different forms, practices and experiences to people from different locations and sections of the society... The second proposal was that while the digital and Internet technologies are new, they do not necessarily only produce new things. There is a need to map the histories and pre-histories of Internets.”

The Researchers at Work programme is initiating the RAW Lectures series to take stock, reflect, and chart courses into the studies of Internet in/from India. The lectures will address the experiences and practices of Internet in India as plural and intertwined with longer-duration processes, as foregrounded by Nishant above. The lectures will also critically respond to the questions around the methods of studying Internet in/from India, and the opportunities and challenges of studying Indian society on/through the Internet.

It gives us immense pleasure to invite Nishant to present the first lecture of the series on Friday, March 06, 2015. The title of the lecture is "Once There was the Internet: Of Stories and Histories of Internet in India."


RAW Lectures #01 - Nishant Shah - Poster


Dr. Nishant Shah

Nishant is the Professor of Culture and Aesthetics of New Media at the Leuphana University Lüneburg, Research Associate at COMMON MEDIA LAB, Affiliate at DIGITAL CULTURES RESEARCH LAB, and International Tandempartner at HYBRID PUBLISHING LAB. He is the co-founder and former-Director-Research at the Centre for Internet and Society, Bangalore, India.

In his varied roles, he has been committed to producing infrastructure, frameworks and collaborations in the global south to understand and analyse the ways in which emergence and growth of digital technologies have shaped the contemporary social, political and cultural milieu. He edited a series of monographs on “Histories of Internet(s) in India” that looks at the complicated relationship that technologies have with questions of gender, sexuality, body, city, governance, archiving and gaming in a country like India. He was also the principal researcher for a research programme that produced the four-volume anthology “Digital AlterNatives With a Cause?” that examines the ways in which young people’s relationship with digital technologies produces changes in their immediate environments.

His Ph.D. thesis titled “The Technosocial Subject: Cities, Cyborgs and Cyberspace” builds a framework to examine the technosocial identities that are produced at the intersection of law, digital technologies and everyday cultural practices in emerging information societies like India. Nishant was an Asia Research fellow looking at the cost and infrastructure of building IT Cities like Shanghai. He is the author of a recent thought-piece titled “Whose Change is it Anyway? – Towards a future of digital technologies and citizen action in emerging information societies” that seeks to revisit the debates around digital activism and change in the global context. His current interests are in critically intervening in debates around Digital Humanities and conditions of change mediated by technologies.

More: http://cdc.leuphana.com/people/#nishant-shah