The Channel, Season 1, EP. 23 - book talk

A Muslim Hub in Western India with Sanderien Verstappen

Sanderien Verstappen is Assistant Professor of anthropology at the University of Vienna. In addition to her writing, she is also a filmmaker and the founding director of the Vienna Visual Anthropology Lab. Sanderien’s latest book is New Lives in Anand: Building a Muslim Hub in Western India, published last year by University of Washington Press. In 2002, when widespread anti-Muslim violence broke out across Gujarat, India, the town of Anand was perceived as something of a safe haven. Against this historical backdrop, the book ethnographically explores contemporary Anand. In the decades since 2002, the town became a hub for Muslims at multiple scales – an aspirational destination for rural villagers, a regional center in western India, and a place linked to diasporic sites abroad. In this episode, Sanderien discusses her multifaceted work in Anand, touching on themes of transnationalism, place-making, and multi-sited ethnography.