Congratulations to Professor Kristin Plys who recently received the Connaught Funding to study coffee houses as a site of anti-authoritarian protest in India and Pakistan in the early and mid 20th century. Professor Plys is an associate professor of Sociology with teaching responsibilities at UTM. Her research sits at the intersection of political economy, postcolonial theory, sociology of development, labor and labor movements, historical sociology, and global area studies. The full article is available on the UTM news site, we have posted an excerpt below.
Wake up and smell the resistance
The differences between anti-authoritarian movements in the 1970s in India and Pakistan, and the role of specific coffee houses in each country in igniting pro-democracy activism, is the focus of a new study by University of Toronto Mississauga assistant professor of sociology Kristin Plys. The winner of a 2018 Connaught Fund New Researcher Award worth $35,000, Plys’ study is called “Brewing Resistance: Coffee House as a site of social protest against post-colonial authoritarianism in India and Pakistan”.
…Since 2012, Plys has been studying political deliberation and cultural expression in the Indian Coffee House in Delhi, which in the early and mid-twentieth century was a prominent meeting place for left-leaning academics, writers and artists. The site was part of a chain of coffee houses established in the 1930s by the then-ruling British Empire. In the 1950s, when India’s independence movement took root, these shops were appropriated by their workers and become employee-run cooperatives; today, there are about 400 across India.
The full article can be found here