Department of Humanities and Social Sciences

Indian Institute of Technology Madras

Mathangi Krishnamurthy

Associate Professor

  Research Interests

  • Anthropology of Work
  • Anthropology of Body and Gender
  • Medical Anthropology

  Office Location

  • Room no – 339A
  • E-mail: mathangi[at]iitm[.]ac[.]in
  • Phone : +91 (44) 2257 4530


  • Krishnamurthy, Mathangi (2018) 1-800-Worlds: The Making of the Indian Call Centre Economy, New Delhi: Oxford University Press.

 Journal Publications

  • Mani, V., & Krishnamurthy, M. (2021). The Work of Sporting Bodies: Football and Masculinity in North Kerala. Verge: Studies in Global Asias, 7(1), 147-169.
  • Coelho, Karen and Mathangi Krishnamurthy. (2020). The Habitus of Agglomeration: Crowding and (Non)Compliance in an Indian City. Anthropology Now; 12(2); 26-38.
  • Krishnamurthy, Mathangi. (2020). Navigating the Body Multiple: Biomedicine, Genetics and Sex/Gender in the Lives of CAH Patients. East Asian Science, Technology and Society: An International Journal (2020) 14:1–14.
  • Mani, Veena and Mathangi Krishnamurthy. (2018) Making a Locality: The Politics of Land and Football in North Kerala. Leisure Studies; 37 (6); pp.721-734
  • Krishnamurthy, Mathangi. (2005). Rebels or Resources: A Study of Identity Management in Indian Call Centers. Anthropology of Work Review; 25 (3-4), pp. 9-18.

 Essays in Edited Volumes

  • Krishnamurthy, Mathangi. 2018. How to do things with Bits and Bytes. In Silicon Plateau Vol.2; (eds.) Ghidini, M., Kelton, T. pp.53-64. Amsterdam: Institute of Network Cultures.
  • Mani, V. and Krishnamurthy, M. (2016), “Sociology of Sport: India”, Sociology of Sport: A Global Subdiscipline in Review (Research in the Sociology of Sport, Vol. 9), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, pp. 37-57. 285420160000009003
  • Krishnamurthy, Mathangi. 2011. Furtive tongues: Examining the language politics of Indian call center workers. In Chutnefying English: The Cultural Politics of Hinglish; (eds.) Snell, Rupert and Rita Kothari; pp. 82-97. Penguin: India.

Invited Publications

  • Krishnamurthy, Mathangi. (2018). Do Poor Women Love Differently? (Commentary). Current Anthropology; 59(5), pp.563-64.
  • Krishnamurthy, Mathangi (2018) 1-800-Worlds: The Making of the Indian Call Centre Economy, New Delhi: Oxford University Press.
  • Krishnamurthy, Mathangi. (2009) 1-800 Worlds: Embodiment and Experience in the Indian Call Center Economy. In Section News, Society for the Anthropology of Work, Angela Jancius (ed.). Anthropology News; 50(5), pp.55-56.
  • Krishnamurthy, Mathangi. (2005). Outsourced Identities: The Fragmentations of the Cross-Border Economy. SAGAR: A South Asia Graduate Research Journal (Now, A South Asia Research Journal); 14., pp.23-38.

Book Reviews

  • “We Looked for Scientists…”. Nanoscale: Society’s deep impact on science, technology and innovation in India. Sekhsaria, Pankaj. AuthorsUpFront. Dialogue: Sciences, Scientists, and Society; 2 December 2020.
  • Neutral Accent: How Language, Labor and Life Become Global. Aneesh, A. Durham and London: Duke University Press. Anthropological Quarterly, Summer 2016, 89(3), pp.981-985.
  • Appropriately Indian: Gender and Culture in a New Transnational Class. Radhakrishnan, Smitha. Durham and London: Duke University Press, 2011. Anthropology of Work Review, September 2011, 32(2), pp. 117-119.
  • Living Our Religions: Hindu and Muslim South Asian American Women Narrate Their Experience. Narayan, Anjana and Bandana Purkayastha (eds.).Virginia: Kumarian Press, 2009. Journal of South Asian Diaspora, September 2009, 1(2), pp. 193-95.
  • Global “Body Shopping”: An Indian Labor System in the Information Technology Industry. Biao, Xiang. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2007. American Ethnologist, August 2008, 35(3), pp. 3017-3021.
  • The Intimate Economies of Bangkok: Tomboys, Tycoons, and Avon Ladies in the Global City. Wilson, Ara. Berkeley: University of California Press, 2004. Anthropology of Work Review, Fall 2005; 26(2), pp. 38-40.

Non-fiction and Popular Press

  • Culture Mulch: A monthly anthropology and popular culture column; The Hindu Sunday Magazine.
  • Is a brick art? Is the brickmaker an artist? The Hindu, May 5, 2018; Chennai.
  • The Pleasures of Misrecognition. 3 Quarks Daily, Mar 19, 2018.
  • I Want to Make Friendship With You. 3 Quarks Daily, Dec 19, 2016.
  • On Sepulchral Culture. 3 Quarks Daily, Jan 18, 2016.
  • An Anthropologist among Sartorialists. 3 Quarks Daily, Nov 24, 2014.
  • American Anthropological Association
  • Society for Urban, National and Transnational Anthropology
  • Society for the Anthropology of Work
  • Society for Feminist Anthropology
  • Centre for Technology and Policy (CTaP), IIT Madras
  • WLI Initiative Grant 2021 Project Title: A Gender Audit of IIT Madras
  • Exploratory Research Proposal Grant 2019 Project Title: Rasayani: An Ethnography of Industrial Subjectivity
  • Young Faculty Research Award 2016 IIT Madras
  • Wellcome Trust Small Grant 2013 Project Title: Future Bodies: The Politics and Ethics of Diagnostic Testing and Genetic Engineering in India.
  • Andrew W. Mellon Postdoctoral Fellowship 2010 Project: World Citizenship
  • University Endowed Dissertation Writing Fellowship 2008 Writing Grant to support Doctoral Research
  • American Association of University Women International Dissertation Fellowship 2007 Fieldwork support for doctoral research
  • National Science Foundation Dissertation Grant 2006 Fieldwork support for doctoral research

Invited Lectures/ Presentations

  • Engendering the Body: A Broad Review of the Body in Feminist Theory. Musings on the Body; Aug 13-14, 2020, Dept. of English; Assam University, Silchar.
  • John and Jane and their Ethnographic Counterparts. Seminar at KREA University; November 21, 2019.
  • The Ethnographic Turn in Indian Contemporary Art. RE-LOOK (43) – Lectures on Indian Art, 1Shanthi Road; curated by Pushpamala; November 11, 2019; Bengaluru.
  • Sexing the Body Multiple: CAH and the Category of Intersex; ‘The Performing Body’; Feb 1-2, 2019; IIT Hyderabad.
  • 1-800-Worlds: The Making of the Indian Call Centre Economy; Depts. Of Anthropology, Sociology and Business and Economics; The International Studies Program; Southwestern University; November 29, 2018.
  • Navigating the Body Multiple; Seminar talk at The University of Texas at Austin; November 26, 2018
  • 2017. Social Dimensions of Technology Transitions; Tandem Research – Policy Lab 03 for a workshop entitled “The Future of Work in India: Technology Foresight Group”; September 2017.
  • 2017. Fixing Unruly Bodies: Practising Care for CAH patients, Asia Research Institute, National University of Singapore, for a workshop entitled, “Framing Technology and Care in Asian Contexts”, May 2017.
  • Keynote Address: Working through Gender: A Performance in Three Acts. Social Issues in Global India; Nov 16-17, 2017, Manipal Centre for Philosophy and Humanities.
  • 2017. Water-Worlds: Image and Representation in the Chennai floods of 2015,The University of Texas at Austin, and The Center for International and Regional Studies/Georgetown-Doha, for a workshop entitled, “Climate Vulnerability in South Asia’s Coastal Cities”, January 2017
  • 2013. 1-800-Worlds: The Making of the New Indian Middle-Classes; Seminar at the Centre for South Asian Studies, The University of Edinburgh, June 2013.
  • New Technologies, Old Divides: The political economy of technology and outsourcing; September 25, 2008; CSL Colloquium, Palo Alto Research Center (PARC).

Paper Presentations

  • The Ignorant Schoolmaster: Embodiment, Figuration and Experience; Association of Asian Studies (AAS)-in-Asia Annual Conference, July 1-4, 2019, Bangkok, Thailand.
  • Ethnographic Attunements; Annual Meeting of the American Anthropological Association, Nov 15-19, 2018, New Orleans, LA
  • How to do things with Bits and Bytes; Media Morphologies: Infrastructures and Technologies in Art, Cinema and Popular Culture, September 1-2 2011, De Nieuwe Oogst Rotterdam
  • The Management of Sleep; Association for Asian Studies and International Convention for Asia Scholars Joint Conference, March 31-April 3, 2011, Honolulu, Hawaii
  • Waking Life/Working Life: The Sleepless Subjects of the Indian Call Center; Annual Meeting of the American Anthropological Association, Nov 17-21, 2010, New Orleans, LA

Ongoing Research and Ethnographic Consultancy and Workshops Select clients

  • ABC Heinz
  • Okapi
  • IKEA
  • Third Eye Design