Department of History

Department of History
Department of History

Aditi Sen

Ancient South Asia, South Asian Religion, Indian Cinema, Horror Films, Food History


Phone: 613-533-6000, ext: 78811
Fax: 613-533-6298
Office: Watson Hall 129



PhD in Ancient Indian culture and History from Deccan College Post Graduate and Research Institute. Pune, India


Aditi Sen is an historian of South Asian religion, gender and sexuality and food history. Aditi's doctoral dissertation focused on The Rig Veda and the Atharva Veda—two essential texts from Ancient India that document orthodox and folk religion respectively.

Her current research is on low budget Bollywood horror films. She focuses on this marginalized industry particularly since it subverts the constructed narrative of Hinduism and religious moral codes by creating a separate sphere of morality and religious system. Within this argument, therefore, is embedded a more fundamental argument: the images portrayed in mainstream Bollywood are not a direct representation of a static and immutable religious and moral system. Much rather, the Bollywood mainstream is also a complex construction and translation of societal codes. The horror genre questions, complicates, and subverts this construction and presents an alternative and oppositional view.

She also looks into the structure of a horror film, which is often very fluid and resembles folklore as opposed to a carefully constructed narrative. Horror films are also a method of preserving oral history and some horror films are made primarily to document local histories and legends.


Books and Chapters in Books:

Legend of Kalighat, 2011, (Co-authored with Pradip Sen), Patabahar Publications, Kolkata, India. Excavation of a Rock Art shelter (No.18) in the Campus of Indira Gandhi Rashtriya Manav Sanghralaya, Bhopal. (co-authored with G.L Badam, Amitava Chowdhury and Hemant Dave) in Exploring the Mind of ancient Man: Festschrift to Robert. G. Bednarik/ Peddrapu Chenna Reddy: New Delhi, 2007.

Popular Articles on Bollywood:

Showing Restraint with QSQT and MPK, Nov 22, 2009, Mumbai Mirror.§name=Lifestyle - Sunday Read§id=82&contentid=200911222009112204515945324b0373e0


Hist 122: Making of the Modern World
Hist 407 Themes in Indian History: Sexuality, Religion and Bollywood