Ankhi Mukherjee talks about that looks at the subject of psychoanalysis as a product of social and cultural processes, and thereby reorients concepts of parental and familial bonds, trauma, coping mechanisms and so on. The conversation focuses on her recent book on the subject, Unseen City: The Psychic Lives of the Urban Poor, which studies community-based psychiatry and how it serves the working classes in three global cities.
Ankhi Mukherjee is Professor of English and World Literatures at the University of Oxford and a Fellow in English at Wadham College. Her most recent book is Unseen City: The Psychic Lives of the Urban Poor, published by Cambridge University Press in December 2021. Her second monograph, What Is a Classic? Postcolonial Rewriting and Invention of the Canon (Stanford, 2014) won the British Academy prize in English Literature in 2015. Mukherjee’s other publications include Aesthetic Hysteria: The Great Neurosis in Victorian Melodrama and Contemporary Fiction (Routledge, 2007) and the collections of essays she has edited, namely A Concise Companion to Psychoanalysis, Literature, and Culture (with Laura Marcus, Wiley-Blackwell, 2015) and After Lacan (Cambridge UP, 2018). Mukherjee has published in competitive peer-reviewed journals, including PMLA, MLQ, Contemporary Literature, Parallax, and the Cambridge Journal of Postcolonial Literary Inquiry, and sits on the editorial boards of several international journals. At present, Mukherjee has two books under contract. She is writing A Very Short Introduction to Postcolonial Literature in the widely circulated VSI series (Oxford UP, 2023) and co-editing (with Ato Quayson) a collaborative volume titled Decolonizing the English Literary Curriculum (Cambridge UP, 2022).
Image: © 2022 Saronik Bosu
Music used in promotional material: ‘Avec Toi’ by Dana Boulé.