Ahona Das

Ahona Das
Cohort Year: 2022
Research Interests: South Asian Girlhoods, Girlhood Studies, Childhood Studies, Graphic Novels & Visual Culture, Children's & YA Lit., Bildungsroman, Gender & Sexuality Studies, Post-colonial studies, Marginal & Global Childhoods, Fairy Tales/Folklore/Storytelling.
Education: MA, Jawaharlal Nehru University, 2020


I wish to investigate the ways in which speech and silence are exercised and expected in the lives of children, especially girls and how these operate in the disciplining and punishing nexus of South Asian households, sanctioning which stories one is allowed to tell and the ones they have to swallow. I foster a keen interest in the accounts of postcolonial girlhoods, and the way in which speaking back to power has entwined our memories of growing up. With children’s literature as my base, I hope to work on the memories of growing-up as represented in children’s literature, graphic novels and films, in different South Asian languages, to map the fictional and biographical experiences of children and young adults, as they tussle with expectations of performance or subservience, to tell their stories themselves.

Part of my interest also lies in texts where adult writers return to their own girlhood experiences renarrativising through the figure of the girl-child in memorial and life-writing. I will attempt to trace a sociology of South-Asian girlhood, through the representations of coming-of-age experiences in different texts, situating the departure from androcentric and eurocentric histories of childhood in these stories.

Research Interests

South Asian Girlhoods, Bildungsroman, Graphic Novels and illustrations, Children's and YA Literature, Picturebooks, Gender and Sexuality Studies, Translation, Narratology, Bengali Rupkatha, Post-colonialism, Childhood Trauma and Memory Studies, Oral Literature, Food Studies, Creative Writing, South Asian Women’s Poetry, Parallel Childhoods, Book History, Book Trade Routes, Childhood Reading Practices, Reading and Literacy Studies, and Fantasy.

Workshops and Presentations

  • Presented a Paper titled “ “Kidding in the Classroom: Reading Stories, Telling Lies” at Children and Childhood: Imaginaries in Indian and Other Asian Literatures and Film, an international conference at Christ University, Bangalore, November, 2021.
  • Presented a Paper titled “Rewriting Rupkatha: An eco-feminist reading of Nabaneeta Debsen’s fairy tales” at the Annual Debrupa Bal Memorial National Students’ Seminar 2020 at the Department of Comparative Literature, Jadavpur University, November, 2020.

Teaching Experience

  • Middle School English Teacher at St Mary's School, Safdarjung, New Delhi (Nov 2020-March 2021)
  • Part Time Spoken English Instructor at Jawaharlal Nehru University, Delhi (Oct 2020-Jan 2021)


MA, Jawaharlal Nehru University, 2020

BA, Presidency University, 2018