Anustup Basu is an Associate Professor in English, Media and Cinema Studies, and Criticism at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He is the author of Bollywood in the Age of New Media: The Geo-televisual Aesthetic (Edinburgh, 2010) and the co-editor of the volumes InterMedia in South Asia: The Fourth Screen (Routledge, 2012) and Figurations in Indian Film (Palgrave-Macmillan, 2013). His essays on film, media, culture, philosophy, and politics have appeared in journals like boundary 2, Semiotic Inquiry, Journal of Human Rights, Postscript, South Asian History and Culture, PostModern Culture, and Critical Quarterly. As a film producer, he made the Bengali feature Herbert (2005) which won the Indian National Award for the Best Regional Film. He has worked as a screenwriter for film and television.
- Indian Cinema, Philosophy of the New Media, Film Theory, Third Cinema (especially Hong Kong, China, the African continent, Iran, and India), Globalization theories, Post-colonial studies, Marxism, and Post-structuralism.
- Theories of the Novel, Modern Bengali fiction and poetry, Indian artistic and literary modernisms of the 19th century, Classical Indian Philosophy, Composition and Rhetoric, Argumentative Writing.
Currently I am finishing up two books:
Nehruvian Cinema: Bombay and Bengal (1955-1962): a wide ranging theoretical study on the themes of Nationhood, Modernity, and Counter-Memory in Hindi and Bengali films made between 1955 and 1962. And Hindutva and Advertised Modernization: a genealogical study of the invention of Hinduism as a ‘Monotheism’ in the modern era. This Semitic ordering of a million different forms of piety was deemed essential for the emergence of a national sense of Hindu peopleness and demographic identity. The book looks at an earlier literary moment of this project and then an advertised/mediatized form of metropolitan Hinduness that has come to the fore in recent times.
Essays forthcoming or in development:
“The Pathos of Decisionist Desire: Contemporary India and the Specter of Narendra Modi.” Solicited for boundary 2.
“Filmfare, Cosmopolitanism, and Bombay Cinema of the Fifties” solicited for an anthology tentatively entitled Industrial Networks of Indian Cinema
I am also working towards a political philosophy of our digital information environment and its relations with war, consensus, and liberalism
Additional Campus Affiliations
Associate Professor, English
Associate Professor, Unit for Criticism and Interpretive Theory
Associate Professor, Media and Cinema Studies
Basu, A. (Accepted/In press). “Filmfare, Cosmopolitanism, and Bombay Cinema of the Fifties”. In M. Mukherjee, & M. Mehta (Eds.), Industrial Networks and Indian Cinema Routledge.
Basu, A. (2020). Hindutva as Political Monotheism. Duke University Press. https://doi.org/10.1215/9781478012498
Basu, A. (Accepted/In press). Dharmendra Singh Deol, Masculinity, and the Late-Nehruvian Hero in Hindi Cinema. In M. Lawrence (Ed.), Indian Film Stars BFI.
Basu, A. (2018). Filmfare and the question of Bengali cinema (1955–65). South Asian History and Culture, 9(2), 141-158. https://doi.org/10.1080/19472498.2018.1446794
Basu, A. (2013). "The face that launched a thousand ships": Helen and public femininity in Hindi film. In M. Sen, & A. Basu (Eds.), Figurations in Indian Film (pp. 139-157). Palgrave Macmillan. https://doi.org/10.1057/9781137349781_8