Purnima Bose

Purnima Bose

Associate Professor, English

  • pbose@indiana.edu
  • 812-855-5334
  • Ballantine Hall 431
  • Office Hours
    By Appointment Only


  • Ph.D., Comparative Literature, University of Texas at Austin, 1993


My research, teaching, and administrative experiences have been inspired by a commitment to building bridges across literary, cultural and international studies. I draw on my training in Comparative Literature to interpret a variety of texts; the majority of my research has been focused on exploring questions of agency within larger geopolitical frameworks, including colonialism, nationalist movements, and neo-liberalism. My first book, Organizing Empire examined discourses of individualism in accounts of nationalism, the Indian and Irish women’s movements, and the Raj. Since then my research interests have cohered around corporations and the relationship between activism and globalization. Cultural Critique and the Global Corporation, an anthology I co-edited with my long-time collaborator and friend, Laura E. Lyons, provides case studies of corporations that interpret their self-representations in relation to their activities in China, South Africa, India, Iraq, and the United States. A special issue of Biography on Corporate Personhood, which we also co-edited, offers analyses of the corporate form’s different iterations in Canada, China, India, Singapore, and the United States.

I am currently working on a book-length project on the US intervention in Afghanistan, which brings together my interests in South Asian Studies, American Studies, and corporate globalization: Intervention Narratives: Afghanistan, and the War on Terror. To address what I see as some of the limitations of transnational scholarship, I am trying to acquire historical and geopolitical literacies with a number of different sites (Afghanistan, the USSR/Russia, Pakistan, India, Saudi Arabia, and Iran), insurgent groups, and institutions (the US security apparatuses and corporations who have landed reconstruction contracts). My goal is to evaluate how knowledge of these parallel and intersecting histories transforms our understanding of dominant narratives on US intervention in Afghanistan from the 1980s to the present.