Historian Honored with Social Sciences Chair

Chandra Mallampalli, Professor of History, has Been Installed in the Rotating Fletcher Jones Foundation Chair in the Social Sciences

History professor Chandra Mallampalli was installed as the Fletcher Jones Foundation professor in the social sciences February 5. “Chandra has become a significant scholar in the study of religion in India, and we’re delighted to honor him,” said Provost Mark Sargent.

Mallampalli, who has taught at Westmont since 2001, also delivered a lecture, “Dangerous Knowledge? Reflections on the Protestant Legacy in India.” “At a time when our own society has unleashed its own toxic variety of nationalism, we are well positioned to learn from Protestants in India and hopefully better positioned to discern, in the spirit of the Corinthians passage, the knowledge that puffs up from the love that builds up,” he concluded.

A panel of three scholars responded: Prasannan Parthasarathi (Boston College), Richard Fox Young (Princeton Seminary) and Marianne Robins (Westmont).

The Fletcher Jones Foundation created the chair to rotate among deserving faculty within the social science division. Mallampalli succeeded Rick Pointer, professor of history, who became the first incumbent in 2010.

Mallampalli earned a doctorate at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and focuses his research at the intersection of religion, law and society in colonial India. He conducted research in India and the UK with funding from the National Endowment for the Humanities for his book, “Race, Religion and Law in Colonial India.” His most recent book, “A Muslim Conspiracy in British India?” examines tensions between colonial rulers and India’s Muslims during the years of the First Anglo-Afghan War (1839-42).

He is under contract by Oxford University Press to write a general history of Christianity in South Asia. He is a life member of Clare Hall at Cambridge University.

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