Dr. Tanya Sengupta


Dr. Tania Sengupta
Lecturer in Architectural History and Theory
The Bartlett School of Architecture

Tania Sengupta is an architectural and urban historian specialising in postcolonial and transcultural studies. She did her PhD from the University of Westminster, London, on the architecture and urban patterns of provincial administrative towns in nineteenth century British colonial Bengal, which was shortlisted within the final four for the Royal Institute of British Architects President’s Research Award for Outstanding PhD Thesis 2011. She has worked in practices and taught in eminent architecture and urban design schools in India, then on the Masters course on ‘Architecture, Globalisation and Cultural Identity’ at the University of Westminster, London and is presently Lecturer in Architectural History and Theory at the Bartlett School of Architecture, UCL, teaching on the Masters in Architecture (professional), Masters in Architectural History and PhD programmes. She has been visiting research fellow in institutions such as the Zentrum Moderner Orient, Berlin, the Karl Jaspers Centre for Advanced Transcultural Studies, Heidelberg, been part of the European Union funded research and networking initiative ‘European Architecture beyond Europe’ and is presently a steering committee member of the Architectural Humanities Research Association (AHRA), UK.

Her research Interests lie in Postcolonial and transcultural studies in architecture/ urbanism; colonial and post-colonial architecture and urbanism in South Asia and more generally the global South; governance, power structures and space; spatial patterns of domesticity; everyday lives and ‘minor’ architectures; Globalisation and its scalar dimensions; trans-disciplinary methodologies in architectural research.

Key Publications
Tania Sengupta, Mapping the Margins: Colonial Governance and Spatial Cultures in Provincial Towns of Eastern India 1786-c. 1900, London, IB Tauris, expected Dec 2016. [Authored monograph]

Tania Sengupta, ‘Architecture of Colonial South Asia 1800-1950’ in Sir Banister Fletcher’s History of Architecture, 21st Edition, London, The Banister Fletcher Trust and RIBA, expected Dec 2016.

Tania Sengupta (ed.), Architectural Histories of ‘Non-Western’ Worlds, four volumes, series titled ‘Critical and Primary Sources’, London, Bloomsbury. expected 2017. [Under discussion]

Tania Sengupta, ‘The Everyday Lives of Minor Spaces in Officers’ Bungalows of Colonial Bengal’, in Iain Borden, Murray Fraser and Barbara Penner (eds.), Forty Ways to Talk About Architecture, London, John Wiley & Co. June 2014.

Tania Sengupta, ‘Living in the periphery: provinciality and domestic space in colonial Bengal’, London, Journal of Architecture, Volume 18 – Issue 6 – Nov-Dec 2013. Routledge, Taylor and Francis.

Tania Sengupta, Book Review, Swati Chattopadhyay, Unlearning the City: Infrastructure in a New Optical Field, in Planning Perspectives, Nov-Dec 2013, Routledge Taylor and Francis.

Tania Sengupta, ‘Between country and city: fluid spaces of provincial administrative towns in nineteenth-century Bengal’. Urban History. Volume 39 – Issue 01 – February 2012, Special issue on ‘Suburbs in South Asia’, Swati Chattopadhyay (guest ed.), Cambridge Journals, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Tania Sengupta, ‘The Garden and the Bazaar: the visions, spaces and structures of colonial towns in nineteenth-century provincial Bengal’, Visual Culture in Britain, Volume 12- Issue 3, 333-348, February 2012, Special Issue, ‘Visual Culture of British India’, Sarah Monks (guest ed.), London: Taylor and Francis.

Projects and Collaborations
Collaboration with Dr. Jaideep Chatterjee, Department of Media, Art and Design, Shiv Nadar University, India, on Postcolonial Conversations: Britain, India and Architectural Knowledge. On-going. (Funded by the Bartlett School of Architecture).

Collaboration (recently initiated) with Swati Chattopadhyay, Department of History of Art and Architectural History, University of California, Santa Barbara and Arijit Sen, School of Architecture and Urban Planning, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, on ‘Kolkata/ Calcutta’ (Urban history of neighbourhoods; physical documentation, archival and oral histories of domestic architecture and everyday sites of cultural life).

Teaching Interests

Architecture, urbanism and Postcolonialism; Architecture and transculturality; Governance and space in South Asia; Domesticity and space in South Asia; Politics of space in South Asia; Everyday architecture and space in South Asia/ the global South; Histories of architectural and spatial knowledge as configured through encounters between South Asia and the western world.

Areas of PhD research supervision

‘Hidden architectures’ of new African migrants in post-apartheid Cape Town; Histories of architectural education and east-west flows in pedagogic practice in Chinese institutions c.1920-1970; Urban street art in West-Africa with focus on citizenship, alternative urban experience and everyday agency in public space.