Department of History

Department of History
Department of History

Aprajita Sarcar

Ph.D. Candidate
Postcolonial South Asia


Phone: 613-893-6964



M.Phil, Jawaharlal Nehru University
M. A. Political Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University
B.A. (Hons.) Journalism, University of Delhi


My doctoral project, under Dr Ishita Pande's supervision, is on the idea of the small family norm in South Asia (1930-60). It would examine the normative family in the backdrop of the urbanizing context of a city within the developing nation that was India. My research interests include governmentality, gender, urban histories, historical demography, oral family histories, histories of health governance, development, medicine, maternal health, and population control in Asia. 

I have been trained as a journalist and have worked in the press in Delhi, before meandering to archival research. I have completed my M.Phil in Social Medicine and Community Health from Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi (2011-2013), and my dissertation was titled, ‘Coercion, Charity, Development: The Cornerstones of Public Health Governance in India.’ 


Presented a paper titled, ”The Small Family as Envisioned within the Masterplan of Delhi, 1962” in the workshop in the University of Warwick, titled, "Science, Technology and Medicine: The Problem of Poverty, 1930-2000". This was held on the 4th-5th of October, 2012, at the Department of History, University of Warwick. 

Presented a paper titled, “Planning for the Future Metropolis: Reading the social imaginary of the Masterplan of Delhi, 1962” as part of “Writing Histories of Power/Contestation,” Centre for Historical Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi. This was held from 7th-9th April 2012. 

Presented at Bow River Graduate History Conference in the department of History, University of Calgary (January 22-23 2015). The paper was titled “How to Bring the Mahila to a Hospital: The Convictions of Lady Dufferin, Florence Nightingale, and Margaret Sanger.” 

Presented at the Dalhousie History Conference (March 20-22 2015) titled ‘History across the Disciplines: Narratives, Regions, and Theories: Modes of Understanding the Past.’ The paper was titled “The idea of the small family, as envisioned in the first Master Plan of Delhi, 1962.” Presented the same at the twelfth Mc-Gill Queens Graduate History Conference (March 6-7 2015) titled ‘The Practical and Impractical Past.’ 

Presented at Yorke Centre for Asian Research Third International Graduate Conference (May 1-2, 2015). The Paper was titled “Of development, and the missing girl child: Transnational Actors in the Family Planning Strategies of India and People's Republic of China, 1930-1960.”


Principal's International Doctoral Award, International Tuition Award, Queens Graduate Award


Article titled “A historical and anthropological comparative of the Family Planning Strategies of India and People's Republic of China,” China Report, Sage Publications Ltd. (forthcoming). 

Working Paper titled “American Philanthropy In Health Governance In China: Role, Motivations And Transformations.” Published online on October 31st 2013, and available at: