Plenary Discussion: Videogames and SF in India

Speakers: Dr Bodhisattva Chattopadhyay, University of Oslo

Title: ‘On the Tech-Tree Model of History’


Bodhisattva Chattopadhyay is Associate Professor in Global Culture Studies at the University of Oslo, Norway. He leads the international research group CoFUTURES. Chattopadhyay is the leader (PI) of two major research projects, “CoFutures: Pathways to Possible Presents” (European Research Council), and “Science Fictionality” (Norwegian Research Council). He runs the Holodeck, a games research lab at the University of Oslo. Chattopadhyay has served as an innovations consultant with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). He is also Imaginary College Fellow at the Center for Science and the Imagination, Arizona State University, and has been a visiting researcher at the Department of Informatics at the University of California at Irvine and the Evoke Lab/Calit2, as well as the Department of English, University of Liverpool. Chattopadhyay works on speculative futures and science fiction (SF) and he has taught and lectured widely on these subjects around the world, and his critical work on Indian SF and the theory of kalpavigyan and mythologerm have been considered germinal to the field. He has served as co-Editor-in-Chief of Fafnir: Nordic Journal of Science Fiction and Fantasy Research, and the Journal of Science Fiction. He is also founding co-editor with Taryne Taylor of the Routledge book series Studies in Global Genre Fiction. Chattopadhyay has written or edited ten books, published numerous articles, exhibited in six transnational art projects, and produced the award-winning film Kalpavigyan: A Speculative Journey, the first documentary on science fiction from India and Bengal. His latest work is the forthcoming Routledge Handbook of CoFuturisms – coedited with Grace Dillon, Isiah Lavender III, and Taryne Taylor – a 400,000 word essay collection featuring a stunning range of work from around the world on contemporary futurisms, including Indigenous Futurisms, Afro and African futurisms, Latinx and Latin American futurisms, and Asian Futurisms. Other than his research and artistic research grants, he is also the recipient of numerous awards and prizes, including the World Fantasy Award (2020), the Johannes H Berg Memorial Prize (2019), the Foundation Essay Prize (2017), and the Strange Horizons Readers’ Poll Award (2013). His research website is:

Professor Simi Malhotra, Jamia Millia Islamia University

With a cumulative research and teaching experience of over 23 years, first at the University of Delhi and then at Jamia Millia Islamia, Simi Malhotra is currently the Professor and Head of the Department of English at Jamia Millia Islamia, New Delhi.

Her latest publications are the edited books Food Culture Studies in India: Consumption, Representation and Mediation, and Inhabiting Cyberspace in India: Theory, Perspectives and Challenges, both in 2021 from Springer, and the co-authored books Terrains of Consciousness: Multilogical Perspectives on Globalization, in 2021 from the Würzburg University Press, Germany, and Ocean As Method: Thinking With The Maritime, in 2022 from Routledge.

She has received a number of grants and fellowships, the latest being the 2020 DUO-India Professor Fellowship Award by ASEM-DUO and the UGC-DAAD Project for 21-22. 

The talk will be moderated by Souvik Kar, one of our founder members.

Souvik Kar (he/his/him) is a University Grants Commission of India-Senior Research Fellow (SRF) Ph.D. Candidate, researching Postcolonial Atomic Cultures at Indian Institute of Technology Hyderabad, India. His research interests include Energy Humanities, Literature and the Anthropocene, Videogame Studies, and Science and Technology Studies. He also likes to speculate that videogames play him, rather than the other way round.