CMN213 | Making the Nation: Politics, Popular Culture and Law

Course Information

  • 2023-24
  • CMN213
  • 5-Year B.A., LL.B. (Hons.), Master's Programme in Public Policy, LL.M.
  • V, III, IV
  • July 2023
  • Elective Course

The purpose of this course is to understand the process of nation and state making in India through the ideas of ‘development’ from the lens of popular culture and law. Complementing the analysis of ‘development’ already presented in the ‘Law, Poverty and Development’ course, this seminar course focuses on how the imagination of the ‘nation’, in particular ‘the economy’ as a constituent element of the nation, is constructed and produced; how law performs as a site where the ‘the Indian economy’ is produced and governed; and importantly, how different conceptions, promises and anxieties of the nation are communicated, circulated and critiqued in the everyday life of its people through popular culture.

Apart from book chapters and scholarly articles, the seminar course engages with political speeches, films and posters, Constituent Assembly debates, and other government documents like the Five Year plans. While students who have already studied LPD will find this course complimenting the themes covered earlier and deepen their understanding of these issues, students who are new to the subject will also find it useful.

The course will use a combination of pedagogical tools but will mainly rely on lecture and seminar style discussions. For most classes, depending on the particular module, a few students will be expected to lead the class discussion as discussants. The readings will be limited but focussed and students are expected to engage with the material in light of a given set of questions.



Rashmi Venkatesan

Assistant Professor of Law