Aniruddhan Vasudevan is a sociocultural anthropologist whose research focuses on the intersections of gender and sexuality, religion, and ethics of relationality and care. He recently completed his Ph.D. in Anthropology at the University of Texas at Austin. His dissertation is an ethnographic study of religious and communal life among a group of thirunangai transgender women in Chennai, India, and it details the place that attachment to goddess Angalamman holds in shaping ethical life for these actors. His research was supported by fellowships from the American Institute of Indian Studies, the Taraknath Das Foundation, and multiple centers at UT-Austin.
Vasudevan’s broader and ongoing interests are towards understanding how people form structures of care outside of traditional forms of family and community; how they commit to such visions of belonging; what rituals, practices, and narratives anchor such visions and commitments; and how such projects of world-making relate to logics of state, capital, and political action. At Princeton, Vasudevan will work on a number of journal articles, an edited volume on queer/trans friendship and intimacy, and a monograph based on his dissertation research. He is also a translator of celebrated works of fiction by Tamil authors Ambai and Perumal Murugan. In fall 2020, he will teach a course in queer anthropology and ethnography.