Suchitra Samanta


Suchitra Samanta

Collegiate Associate Professor


546 McBryde Hall 
225 Stanger Street 
Blacksburg, VA 24061


(540) 231-7528


Department Membership



  • Feminist Activism
  • Global Feminism
  • Multiculturalism
  • India

Professional Activities

  • Jazz India, Kolkata Chapter, former Manager
  • Women's Resource Center, Radford, VA, former At-Large Member of the Board of Directors


  • Ph.D. University of Virginia
  • M.A. Univeristy of Virginia (Cultural Anthropology)
  • M.A. University of Virginia (Drama/Playwriting)
  • B.A. Lady Brabourne College

Research Interests

    Awards and Honors

    2012: SPORN award for teaching introductory subjects, Virginia Tech

    2012: Women and Minority Artists and Scholars Lecture Series Scholarship

    2009: Women and Minority Artists and Scholars Lecture Series Scholarship

    Selected Publications


    Samanta, S. “Sanctuary. Stories of Kolkata, its Gods, and its People.” [An anthology of my short fiction]. Kolkata, India: Dasgupta & Co./Dasgupta-Alliance (2012).

    “Hauntings. Thirteen Stories from Bangla's Master Storytellers.” [An anthology of stories on the supernatural which foreground female protagonists, across 100 years of Bengali literature, translated and edited by myself]. New Delhi, India: Katha Vilasam (2000).


    Samanta, S. "Seeing Kali's City as "Insiders": Religious Diversity, Gender, Class, and Culture as "Textured" Learning for American Students." Practicing Anthropology, Journal of the Society for Applied Anthropology, vol.35 (3): 23-27. (2013)

    Samanta, S. "Negotiating Tradition and Modernity: Muslim Women as Effective Role Models in a Kolkata Slum Community" in Women's Rights in the 21st Century, ed. by Caroline Schulz and Bogumil Terminski (Ashgate) (forthcoming, submitted 2012).

    Samanta, S. "Immobility and 'Unfreedom': Dowry's Violence in the Lives of poor Indian Women." Sociologica Indica, Vol. 1 (2009).

    Additional Information

    Dr. Samanta is presently conducting interviews for a pilot study on Asians in Virginia community colleges. There is very little scholarship on this topic (across the US), which centrally addresses the value of the community college system for diverse Asians of low income (immigrants and citizens), across different ethnicities and/or nationalities. This is a qualitative study which enquires into, for example, “contexts of exit” from the country of origin, reasons for leaving, family background and levels of education, courses of study at the college, possible gender differences and constraints, socioeconomic status, sources of support (including financial aid, family, ethnic and religious communities) and centrally, the role of the American community college as this facilitates Asian aspirations in the USA. The study, at its inception, questions the “model minority myth” which stereotypes Asians in general, and seeks to understand the reality of those Asian that do not fit that model as they seek opportunity in the USA.