Bio


Parna Sengupta is Associate Vice Provost and Senior Director of Stanford Introductory Studies (SIS), under the Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education (VPUE).SIS curricular programs include: Thinking Matters, 20+ required first-year courses that develop critical thinking and other transferable academic and personal skills as a foundation for liberal education at Stanford; The ESF (Education as Self-fashioning) program for first-year students; SLE and ITALIC, residential program for first-year students; the Introductory Seminars program offers 230+ seminars for first- and second-year students each year; and Sophomore College offers 20 intensive seminar courses each year for returning sophomores during the first three weeks of September.

Parna arrived at Stanford in 2008 from Carleton College, where she was an associate professor in South Asian history. Parna’s book, Pedagogy for Religion: Missionary Education and the Fashioning of Hindus and Muslims in Bengal (UC Press, 2011), reveals the centrality of missionary models of schooling on the development of modern education, an influence that resulted in the reinforcement of religion and religious identity in colonial India. Her most recent project is on the early twentieth century feminist thinker Rokeya Hossain.

Current Role at Stanford


Work with faculty director and associate vice-provost on the "Thinking Matters" program and requirement. This includes curricular development, supervising student enrollment specialist, and support Thinking Matters fellows program.

Honors & Awards


  • Spencer Post-doctoral Fellowship, National Academy of Education (2003-2004)
  • Spencer dissertation Fellowship, Spencer Foundation (1999-2000)
  • Bangladesh-India Dissertation Fellowship, Social Science Research Council (1998-1999)

Education & Certifications


  • PhD, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, History (2000)
  • BA, University of California, Berkeley, History (1993)

All Publications


  • The Worship of Taste: Rokeya Hossain and the Politics of Ritual Fasting Food, Faith and Gender in South Asia: The Cultural Politics of Women's Food Practices Sengupta, P. Bloomsbury. 2020: 55–72
  • Market Predictions: Astrology in Modern India Intersections of Religion and Astronomy edited by Corbally, C., Dinell, D., Ricker, A. Routledge. 2020
  • History of Protestant Missionary Education in India: Minority Lessons Handbook of Education Systems in South Asia edited by Sarangapani, P., Pappu, R. Springer. 2020
  • Pedagogy for Religion: Missionary Education and the Fashioning of Hindus and Muslims in Bengal PEDAGOGY FOR RELIGION: MISSIONARY EDUCATION AND THE FASHIONING OF HINDUS AND MUSLIMS IN BENGAL Sengupta, P. 2011: 1–212
  • Astral Time: Almanacs and Colonial Modernity Knowing India: Colonial and Modern Constructions of the Past Sengupta, P. 2011
  • Teaching Gender in the Colony: The Education of Outsider Teachers in Late Nineteenth Century Bengal Journal of Women's History Sengupta, P. 2005; 17 (4)

    View details for DOI 10.1353/jowh.2005.0055

  • An Object Lesson in Colonial Pedagogy Comparative Studies in Society and History Sengupta, P. 2003; 45 (1)