Skip to main content

The Post-Colonial Bauman (3): Talk by Shalini Randeria

Thursday 28 January 2021, 4-6pm

‘Imperial Entanglements: Rethinking Modernity with and beyond Zygmunt Bauman’

Engaging critically with Zygmunt Bauman’s contribution to our understanding of modernity, which played an important role in shifting the debate beyond the teleology of unilinear modernisation, this lecture addresses the Eurocentrism that characterises not only classical but also contemporary sociological theorisations of modernity, including that of Bauman. It will examine some recent alternative theorisations in terms of plural, regional or vernacular modernities. In a postcolonial perspective, it will be argued that only a consideration of imperial spatial and temporal entanglements allows us to grasp modernity as relational in the past and in the present. It illustrates these using ethnographic material from my own field research in India on legal entanglements.

Shalini Randeria is Rector, Institute for Human Sciences, Vienna, and Professor of Social Anthropology and Sociology, Graduate Institute for International and Development Studies, Geneva, where she also directs the Albert Hirschman Center on Democracy. Her research interests include anthropology of globalisation, law, state and civil society, postcolonial theory and plural modernities.


Anyone interested in attending should register by writing to to receive the links for any/all of the Post-Colonial Bauman talks.