Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs
Center for Contemporary South Asia

Sarah Besky

Assistant Professor of Anthropology and International and Public Affairs
Associate Director, Center for Contemporary South Asia
Director of Undergraduate Studies, South Asian Studies

+1 401 863 2451


I received my PhD in anthropology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.  From 2012 to 2015, I was a postdoctoral fellow in the Society of Fellows at the University of Michigan, where I completed a project based on fieldwork in Darjeeling, India.  My book, The Darjeeling Distinction: Labor and Justice on Fair-Trade Tea Plantations in India (University of California Press, 2014) explores how legacies of colonialism intersect with contemporary market reforms to reconfigure notions of value—of labor, of place, and of tea itself.  My current research explores agrarian and industrial reform in the Indian tea industry through the lenses of taste and masculinity.