I am the founder of Harmattan Theater, Inc., an environmental theater company based in New York City and Professor of Global Studies in the Department of Social Science and Cultural Studies at Pratt Institute, New York. My scholarly research combines critical cultural theory and environmental practice, and to that end, I have written widely on globalization, urbanism, performance and visual culture. I am interested in the junctures between cities, performance, water ecologies and coastal futures. Books by me include Fluid New York: Cosmopolitan Urbanism and the Green Imagination (Duke University Press, 2013); Nomadic Identities: The Performance of Citizenship (Minnesota, 1999) and coeditor of Performing Hybridity (Minnesota, 1999). Other co-edited volumes include City Corps (Journal of Space and Culture), New Hybrid Identities (Women and Performance, 1995) and Bodywork (Women and Performance, 1999). Since 2009, I have created community based, site specific performances addressing water issues along river and ocean cities around the maritime world including Istanbul, Venice, Amsterdam, Cochin, Delhi, Cape Town, Lisbon, New York. My directorial interests lie in bringing together questions of Water politics, dance, trance movement traditions, ritual, performance art, mime, images and text into conversation with coastal societies. My training in the Indian and Tanzanian environmental and folk theater traditions, including Jatra, Chautu Nadagam, Indian street theater movements, Japanese Kyogen, and the experimental theater techniques of Jerzy Grotowski, Eugenio Barba, Bertolt Brecht and Marina Abramovich, have syncretically shaped my experiments with ecology, urban space and climate change. My Fellowships and Awards include a Cornell Society for the Humanities Fellowship (Declined), Mellon Grant, Ford Foundation Grant, Rockefeller Fellowship at the Asian/American Center, CUNY, Pembroke Center Post-Doctoral Fellowship at Brown, a Post-Doctoral Fellowship at the Unit for Criticism and Interpretive Theory, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and a University of California, Humanities Research Institute Fellowship at Irvine. My writings have appeared in Liberation Monde, Social Text, My doctoral work was in British Cultural Studies with a focus on Black British and African Film and Theater, at the Department of Theater and Dance, the University of California, Santa Barbara, where I got my PhD. My Masters, also from UCSB, emphasized Directing and Playwriting., Beyond Biopolitics, Clark University Series, Black Renaissance, Passage to Manhattan, Bowery Womens Poems, Architectural Design, Problematizing Blackness, Embodied Utopias, Corpus Delecti, Talking Visions, Sportcult, Soul, The Ends of Performance, The Visual Culture Reader, Interventions, New Observations, Praxis, Oxford Literary Review, Late Imperial Culture, African American Review, Movement Research. I have been a guest editor for Women and Performance. I am currently completing a book on Indian Ocean maritime networks.
B.A., M.A., Madras Christian College; M.A., Ph.D., University of California at Santa Barbara.