Amrita Mondal received her PhD from Max Weber Centre, University of Erfurt in 2020 and immediately after, she joined FZG as a postdoctoral fellow.
At FZG Amrita’s present work tries to bring together economic anthropology and family histories into conversation, by exploring the temporal dimension of property, and develop an ethic of approaching the non-historical through archives without giving up on the delights of ethnography. By taking the family and its property transmission practices, particularly those of inheritance, as a site of investigation, Amrita explores how ‘individual time’, ‘family time’ and ‘historical time’ become mutually constitutive. In tracing the practices of (re)production of family wealth, her project deals with how future imaginaries become a source of shaping the past as narrated and practiced in the present. The strength of her project lies in shifting the focus of mainstream wealth accumulation (or loss) studies of family and family-firms from its overly economic underpinnings to its temporal dimension where time ceases to be just a period, but an agent that energizes present social and economic practices. Her regional expertise lies in South Asia.
Amrita’s debut book Owning Land, Being Women – Inheritance and Subjecthood in India (2021, De Gruyter: Berlin and Boston) analyses the contested relationship between the rights of property, formation of gendered subjects and dynamics of inheritance in West Bengal, India.