Assistant Professor
Ethnic Studies


PhD, Social and Political Thought, York University, Canada, 2016
MA, Social and Political Thought, York University, Canada, 2010 
BA(H), Economics & Development Studies, Queen’s University, Canada, 2007

Research Interests

Critical Ethnic Studies, Asian American Studies, Queer & Trans of Color Critiques, Intersectional & Transnational Feminisms, Anti-colonial & Decolonial Thinking, Settler Colonialism Studies, South Asian Studies, Anti-Caste Critiques

Nishant Upadhyay is an Assistant Professor of Ethnic Studies at the University of Colorado Boulder. They received their PhD at York University, Toronto in the Graduate Program of Social and Political Thought in 2016. Their dissertation received the National Women’s Studies Association/University of Illinois Press First Book Award 2018. Prior to joining CU Boulder, Nishant taught Women's and Gender Studies at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth and Northern Arizona University. Their teaching and research focuses on intersections of race, indigeneity, caste, gender, and sexuality. Their book manuscript, Indians on Indian Lands: Transnational Intersections of Race, Caste, and Indigeneity, studies the formation of dominant-caste Hindu Indian diasporas in North America and Indian diasporic complicities in processes of settler colonialism, antiblackness, Islamophobia, and brahminical supremacy. The manuscript is under advance contract with the University of Illinois Press. 


Refereed Articles

“Making of “Model” South Asians on the Tar Sands: Intersections of Race, Caste, and Indigeneity." Journal of the Critical Ethnic Studies (Forthcoming 2019). 

““Can You Get More American Than Native American?”: (Racialized) Drag Americans, Settler Colonialism, and RuPaul’s Drag Race.” Cultural Studies, Volume 33, No. 1:  480-501 (2019).

“Feminisms, Collaborations, Friendships: A Conversation,” co-authored with Richa Nagar, Özlem Aslan, Nadia Hasan, Omme Rahemtullah, and Begum Uzun.  Feminist Studies, Volume 42, No. 2: 502-519 (2016). 

“Pinkwatching Israel, Whitewashing Canada: Queer (Settler) Politics and Indigenous Colonization in Canada”, co-authored with Michael C. Jackman. WSQ: Women’s Studies Quarterly, Volume 42, Nos. 3-4: 195-210 (2014).

“Queering Conceptual Boundaries: Assembling Indigenous, Marxist, Postcolonial and Queer Perspectives”, co-authored with Paulo Ravecca. Jindal Global Law Review, Volume 4, No. 2: 357-378 (2013).

“Pernicious Continuities: Un/settling Violence, Race and Colonialism."  Sikh Formations: Religion, Culture, Theory, Volume 9, No. 2: 263-268 (2013). 

Edited Collections

“Complicities, Connections, and Struggles: Critical Transnational Feminist Analysis of Settler Colonialism,” special guest editor of Feral Feminisms (4) with Shaista Patel and Ghaida Moussa (2015).

“Ghadar: A Living History,” special guest editor of Sikh Formations: Religion, Culture, Theory 10(1)   (2014).

Contributions to Edited Collections (Selected)

“Brown Bodies, Borders, and Boats: Reading Tamil ‘Irregular Arrivants’ Through the History of the Komagata Maru," co-authored with Nadia Hasan, Sailaja Krishnamurti, Omme Rahemtullah, and Nayani Vathsaladevi-Thiyagarajah. In Charting Imperial Itineraries: Unmooring the Komagata Maru, eds. Rita K. Dhamoon, Davina Bhandar, Renisa Mawani, and Satwinder K. Bains (UBC Press, Vancouver: 2019).