Keynote Speakers

Prof. Ben Kafka – New York University

Ben Kafka is a professor in the Department of Media, Culture, and Communication at New York University. He is the author of The Demon of Writing: Powers and Failures of Paperwork (Zone Books, 2012), which helped establish the field of “paperwork studies.” Since then, he has become increasingly interested in the psychodynamics of groups, organizations, and cultural processes, and is currently working on a new book about induced insanity (gaslighting, double binds, folies-à-deux, Catch-22s, etc.). 

Professor Kafka has been a member of the School of Social Science of the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton and a senior fellow of the Internationales Kolleg für Kulturtechnikforschung und Medienphilosophie at the Bauhaus-Universität Weimar. He is also a psychoanalyst, and sees patients in private practice. 

Dr. Tania Sengupta – University College London

Dr Tania Sengupta is an architectural historian and Director of Architectural History and Theory at the Bartlett School of Architecture, University College London. Tania trained and worked as an architect and urban designer in India, and taught architectural design and history and theory in various schools there before moving to teaching and research in the UK. She works on architectural history from postcolonial and transcultural perspectives. Her research interests lie in colonial and post-colonial architectures and urban landscapes of South Asia; provinciality and urban-rural relationships; material and spatial cultures of governance and bureaucratic practices; architectures of domesticity; modernity’s and modern state bureaucracies’ everyday aspects; and scalar relationships of architecture and urban space from the proximal to the panoramic/ global.

Tania has recently contributed a substantial chapter on the architectural history of colonial South Asia for the forthcoming 21st edition of Banister Fletcher’s History of Architecture and is finalising her book on spatial cultures of provincial governance and everyday life in colonial Bengal, India. Presently she’s also involved in a collaborative project spanning USA, UK and India and entitled Mapping Urban Materiality, the first part of which, called Mapping Ephemerality, seeks to read the historical, spatial, social and cultural imprints and popular mobilisation of a city-wide religious festival in Calcutta.