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Current State: Published
Anup Dhar

(i) Fellow, CSCS (ii) Co-Coordinator, CUSP@CSCS (iii) Research Coordinator, Integrated Science Education

Anup Dhar, Fellow at Centre for the Study of Culture and Society (CSCS), Bangalore, India was a medical doctor, who driven by his critical take on psychiatry and psychology moved over to the interstices of Psychoanalysis-Feminism-Marxism. His PhD (Freud, Return to Freud and the Feminist Turn) was in Philosophy. He is coordinator of an applied research programme ‘Studies in Culture-Subjectivity-Psyche: Rethinking Mental Health’ (www.cusp.net.in). He is also the Research Coordinator of Integrated Science Education, Higher Education (HE) Cell at CSCS. His present research work titled ‘Ab-Original Psychoanalysis: Fort-Da between the Windscreen and the Rear-view Mirror’ is premised on a history of the emergence and materialization of psychoanalytic conceptualizations-approaches in India bringing together trends that developed in Calcutta (the classical Freudian), in Bombay (the Kleinian), in Bangalore (the Jungian and the Jaspers-ian), in Delhi (Eriksonian).


Educational Qualifications:
  • Ph. D. from Department of Philosophy, Jadavpur University, Calcutta (Title of Ph. D. Thesis: Knowing the ‘mad’ ‘colonial’ ‘woman’: Freud, Return to Freud and the Feminist Turn)
  • M.B.B.S., M.A., Research Training Programme (RTP) at the Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta: Thesis Paper for RTP: The Coming of Psychoanalysis in Colonial Bengal: Sa(va)ge Psychoanalyst Girindrasekhar Bose.


  • Dislocation and Resettlement in Development: From Third World to World of the Third – (co-authored with A. Chakrabarti) Routledge: New York and London, 2009 - in press. The hyperlink is:

  • Kathapokathane Marx-Rabindranath: Unnayan O Bikalpa (co authored with A. Chakrabarti) – Gangchil, Kolkata - 2008.
  • Global Capitalism and the World of the Third (co-authored with A. Chakrabarti and S. Cullenberg) –  Worldview, New Delhi - 2009.
  • Class Trouble – 2007 (co-authored with A. Chakrabarti and S. Cullenberg) – Sanhati – Calcutta.
  • Lesbian Standpoint – 2007 (co-authored with A. Achuthan and R. Biswas) – Sanhati – Calcutta.
  • MANUSCRIPT:Psychoanalysis, Sexual Difference and the abOriginal: Freud-Bose-Lacan.  


    Taking off from the author’s own experience of unease as medical doctor in the psychiatry clinic, this book turns instead to psychoanalysis; a turn, marked by questions of ‘sexual difference’ and ‘aboriginality’. To think a ‘feminized’ and an ‘ab-original’ outline of psychoanalysis, the author takes critical stock of Sigmund Freud and ‘savage’ psychoanalyst Girindrasekhar Bose’s writings on ‘woman’ and the ‘native’. He also takes stock of Jacques Lacan's return to Freud and his writings on ‘woman’; in this context, Lacan’s On Feminine Sexuality: The Limits of Love and Knowledge Book XX: Encore 1972-73 comes up for discussion. To make sense of Bose’s invocation of ‘ab-originality’ and 'cultural-colonial difference' in the space of white western psychoanalysis marked by a Judeo-Christian tradition the author reads Samiksha and Chitta (the English and the Bengali edition of the Journal of the Indian Psychoanalytic Society). He also looks at other Bengali writings (from the 1890s onwards) on woman-unreason-nativity-sexuality marked by a psychoanalytic mindset. This is in that sense the author’s attempt to think at the same time a psychoanalytic feminism and a feminist psychoanalysis; it is also an attempt at thinking an ab-original outline of psychoanalysis; at a more ambitious level, it is also a peep into a non-western non-modern culture of psychology.

Articles in Edited Volumes: 
  • “Science(s) of the Mind: Fort-Da between the Windscreen and the Rearview Mirror” in Materialism and Immaterialism In India and the West: Varying Vistas (Volume XII, Levels of Reality, Part 5 – ed. Partha Ghosh) as part of the broader Project of History of Indian Science, Philosophy and Culture (PHISPC) in the Centre for Studies in Civilizations (CSC), under the general editorship of D P Chattopadhyay - 2010.

  • “Orientalism and the Transition of India in the Era of Globalisation” (co-authored with Anjan Chakrabarti and Stephen Cullenberg) in Immigration and Migration: Social Change and Cultural Transformation – edited by Emory Elliot, Jasmine Payne and Patricia Ploerch – 2007.

  • “Lacanian Theory: Beyond or within the Linguistic Turn” in Post-structuralism and Cultural Theory, edited by Franson Manjali – Allied Publishers, New Delhi – 2006.   
  • “Unreason and the ‘Ethics of Psychoanalysis’ ” in Glimpses into Behavioural Science: Methods and Themes in Practice: A Selection of ASC-CU Refresher Course Lectures. edited by : Jayanti basu and Hirendra Nath Gupta. Published by: UGC Academic Staff College, University of Calcutta, 2005
  •  “Rastra Bignan-e Naribad: Naribad-e Rashtra Bignan” in Rajnitir TattvaKatha (“Feminism in Political Theory: Political Theory in Feminism” in a collection of articles on Political Theory) edited by Deepak Das – published by Ekushe, Calcutta – 2004.
  •  Non-Reason, Madness, Mental Health Science and the ‘Ethics of Psychoanalysis’ ” (co-authored with R. Biswas) in Patient-Physician Relationship – ed. Ratna Dutta-Sharma and Sashimungla – Decent Books, New Delhi (in collaboration with Department of Philosophy, Jadavpur University, Kolkata. 

Journal Articles
  • “Rethinking Poverty Beyond Non-Surplus Theories: Class and Ethical Dimensions of Poverty Eradication” (co-authored) – in Rethinking Marxism: A Journal of Economics, Culture and Society 20: 4, 673 - 687– Routledge: New York and London, 2008.
  • “Development and Capitalism: An Encounter with Tagore’s Ideas on the ‘Co-operative Principle’ ” (co-authored) in Rethinking Marxism: A Journal of Economics, Culture and Society 20: 3, 487 - 499– Routledge: New York and London, 2008.
  • "Labour, Class and Economy: Rethinking Trade Union Struggle" (co-authored with Anjan Chakrabarti) in EPW Vol 43 No. 22 May 31 - June 06, 2008. see link here
  • “Return to Freud: Return to the Mystic Writing Pad” in Samiksha: Journal of the Indian Psychoanalytic Society- 2008
  • “Whither the (Post)colonial: Freud and the Savage Freud” in Journal of Humanities and Social Sciences – Kolkata, July 2007.
  • “Children’s Working World through the Lens of Class” – (co-authored) in Journal of Social and Economic Development (published by Institute of Social and Economic Change [ISEC]) – 2007.
  • “Modernism and the Lacanian Real” (co-authored with A. Chakrabarti) in Journal of Humanities and Social Sciences – Kolkata, 2006.
  •  “Survival of Violence: Violence of Survival” in Identity, Culture and Politics Vol 5, 1-2, 2004 published by the International Centre for Ethnic Studies, Colombo, Sri Lanka and the Council for the Development of Social Science Research in Africa, Dakar, Senegal. See link here
  • “Postcolonial Psychiatry: Nothing (Post)Colonial About It” – a study in the life and works of the Bengali psychiatrist and Marxist Dr. Dhirendranath Ganguly in Bengal Journal of Psychiatry – Publication of The Indian Psychiatric Society, Vol. 12, No. 2, 2004.
  •  “Psychiatry and its Discontents: Voices From Within” in Bengal Journal of Psychiatry – Publication of The Indian Psychiatric Society (co-authored), Vol. 12, No. 1, January, 2003.
  • "Developments: Queering Time” – review of Erica Burman’s book Developments: Child, Image, Nation – Routledge: New York and London in Journal of Health Management – Sage: London – 2009. <!--[if !supportLists]-->
  •  “Sexual Difference: Encore, yet again” in Annual Review of Critical Psychology – No. 7, 2009.
  • “Retrieving Kamla: from the debris of epistemic violence” [a study into the violence implicit in the operations of the medical clinic] in From the Margins, September, 1998. http://www.twilightbridge.com/editorial/kamla.htm<!--[if !supportLists]-->
  • “Athira” (introspections into (post)colonial representations of female/feminine sexuality) in From the Margins, August, 2000.
  • “Beyond or within the Lacanian Turn: Sexuation … Sexual Difference … Melancholy Gender” in From the Margins – February, 2002. 


 Teaching Experience 

Taught Course Capital, Community and Subjectivity (Aug – Nov 2007) for 1st and 2nd year PhD Students at Centre for the Study of Culture and Society (CSCS), Bangalore.  

Teaching Supervision of Course Rethinking Media Laws (Aug – Oct 2007) at Christ College, Bangalore. 

Teaching Supervision of Course Introduction to Cultural Studies (Jan – March 2008) at Christ College, Bangalore.

Teaching Supervision of Course Introduction to Cultural Studies (July – October 2008) at Christ College, Bangalore.

Taught Course Culture, Subjectivity and Psychoanalysis (Aug – Nov 2008) for 1st year PhD Students at Centre for the Study of Culture and Society (CSCS), Bangalore.

Co-Coordinator (along with Ashish Rajadhyaksha) of Course titled ‘The Global City: Mapping Bangalore’ for students of the Eugene Lang College, New School, New York - June 16-July 12, 2008.  

Coordinator of the Course Gender and Culture conducted by the Higher Education Cell, CSCS as part of the UG Diploma in Cultural Studies in Christ University (http://genderandcultureathecell.blogspot.com/2009_02_01_archive.html.


  • CUSP Course: Psychology after Lacan: Have designed, coordinated and co-taught the first CUSP Course (along with Ian Parker and Erica Burman of Manchester Metropolitan University, Radhika. P. of CIDASIA, CSCS, Asha Achuthan of CCS, IISC and Ranjita Biswas of Women's Studies, Jadavpur University). This was an effort to bring together the CUSP collective into collaboratively teaching a course at the Department of Psychology, Christ University. http://lacanians.blogspot.com/.
  • Taught Political Economy as Visiting Faculty in Department of Economics, Kalyani University, Bengal, 2009 and University of Calcutta, 2010. 


Research Supervision

a.                   Guide to one M. Phil Student in Women’s Studies, Jadavpur University (Topic: Feminism and the Lesbian Woman) – Degree Awarded in September 2007.

b.                  Second Reader to Zainab Bawa, PhD Fellow, CSCS.   




(1) Integrated Science Education as Research Coordinator of Integrated Science Education in the Higher Education Cell, CSCS. http://ise-hec-cscs.blogspot.com/

(2) Studies in Culture-Subjectivity-Psyche: Rethinking Mental Health (www.cusp.net.in) as an applied research initiative that intends to rethink mental health in India at the level of http://www.cscsarchive.org/irps/irp.2008-10-14.6748323572

Research and idea incubation in the mental health sciences

Pedagogy (as also link between research and pedagogy)

Clinical practice focusing on aspects of (a) ‘access to service’ and (b) ‘quality of service’  

Awareness building among recipients/users/clients of mental health service

Dissemination of material relating to mental health in the vernacular.

Policy paradigms.


The imagination of CUSP (as both a collective of individuals and a consortium of institutions) stems from the realization that one needs to attend to mind, mental suffering and well-being from multiple perspectives – spanning from the ‘scientific’ to the ‘legal’ to the ‘social science-humanities’ approach. One needs to work at the cusp of multiple perspectives – work at the cusp of biomedical psychiatry (driven by the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual [DSM] and by neuro-psycho-pharmacology) and social psychology (one can call it ‘critical intra-disciplinarity’), work at the cusp of institutional cure and ‘community/folk’ care, work at the cusp of western and non-western, modern and non-modern perspectives to mind, mental suffering and well-being, as also work at the cusp of the hospital-community-family. To attend to mental suffering and well-being, one also needs to think questions related to knowledge and diagnosis of mental suffering, think it beyond the defining dyad normal-pathological; one needs to think the therapeutic, think it in the context of the clinic, think it in terms of the prescribing of drugs as also in terms of psychotherapy-counselling and ‘free association and talking cure’ in a psychoanalytic setting. One needs to think in the context of the clinic, the ethics of the mental health clinic and the rights of the sufferer. Mental health is thus not a question that is exclusive to medicine. One needs an integrated approach; one needs an inter-institutional and an interdisciplinary approach (inter-disciplinarity between the natural sciences and between natural and human sciences) to attend to and promote mental health and to usher in well-being (both at the individual level and the social). It is also related to the structure of the curriculum that is currently taught in medicine, psychiatry, psychology and counselling courses. one need to intervene at a number of levels – spanning from research to clinical practice, spanning from questions of health to questions of law, spanning from curriculum to social understandings of mind-unreason-madness-cure, spanning from elite-urban understandings to rural perceptions, spanning from journal articles to newspaper columns on mental health. One needs to keep in mind the cusp of the economic (the flow of paid services), the political (the flow of power – the power of the Reasoned over the one who is purportedly unreasonable) and the cultural (the flow of meanings with respect to sanity-insanity, madness). With respect to mental health in India, we are in the rather contradictory field of

Silence and disavowal with respect to mental suffering

Stigmatization and violence when suffering is acknowledged

Incitement to discourse on mental health related issues in urban areas since post-globalization (especially through popular representations in media and through the setting up of diverse forms of counselling services). With incitement comes psychologisation and pathologization.

Dissonance between the way people perceive mental suffering and well-being and the way the mental health establishment perceives the same.  


In fact, silence, stigmatization, incitement, psychologisation, pathologization and dissonance constitute the existing set of problems that CUSP wants to take on board. We therefore feel that CUSP needs to work in close collaboration with (1) the Integrated Science Education Initiative of the HE Cell, CSCS (that wishes to bridge the gap between the sciences and the social science-humanities) and (2) the Law, Society and Culture Programme at CSCS (with a focus on human rights) to develop a holistic and a comprehensive approach to mental health as also to conceptualize how it should go about rethinking mental health in India, what surveys-studies-reviews-projects it needs to undertake; this could lead to a marking out of areas of intervention and implementation measures and methods.







1.      Integrated Science Education at IISERs: Exploring Possibilities This one-year project is developing the Humanities and Social Science component for the Indian Institutes of Science Education and Research (IISERs) (Timeline: Aug 2009 to July 2010)


2.      “The Experience of Gendered Violence: Developing Psychobiographies” (Timeline: 2-year project – March 2010 to Feb 2012)





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