Anusha Gavankar


Anusha Gavankar
Anusha completed her B.A. in Economics at Sophia College (University of Mumbai) in 2001 and then a Post-Graduate Diploma in Social Communication Media at the Sophia Polytechnic (Maharashtra State Board of Technical Education) in 2002. In 2015, Anusha received her M.A. degree in Sociology at the University of Mumbai. She also holds a number of postgraduate diplomas: Diploma in Comparative Mythology (2014), Advanced Diploma in Comparative Mythology (2015), Diploma in Sanskrit (2017) and has completed the Certificate Course on Bhakti Literature (2017), all from the Department of Sanskrit, University of Mumbai. In 2015, she wrote a thesis on ‘Shirdi Sai Baba: Understanding the socio-cultural, political and mythical aspects of a phenomenal devotion movement’. She has been a Visiting Faculty Member and Course Coordinator for the courses on Comparative Mythology at the University of Mumbai and has presented research papers at the International Association for Comparative Mythology, Harvard University, for two consecutive years.
Since March 2015, Anusha has been working closely with Professor Emerita Marika Vicziany (Monash University) on the Koli villages of Mumbai. As a member of Professor Vicziany’s team, Anusha has been studying how Koli religious beliefs and practices are changing in response to the reconfiguration of Mumbai’s urban and ecological environment. A forthcoming paper on the ‘People of The Water: The Sat Asaras (Seven Water Spirits), The Kolis and Mumbai’s Development’ involves Anusha as the co-author after Professor Vicziany and Dr. Jayant Bapat, both from Monash University in Melbourne. This background inspired Anusha to apply to the Ph.D. program at the IITB-Monash Research Academy to work on the project called – ‘Lives, Livelihoods and Aspirations of the Kolis in Mumbai: Urban Transformation, Space, Habitat and Coastal Contestations’. She looks forward to working on this project under the supervision of Professor D. Parthasarathy (IIT Bombay), Dr. Samanthi Gunawardana (Monash University) and Professor Emerita Marika Vicziany (Monash University).
Link to student’s project: HSS0707a