About Kaustavi Sarkar…

 Kaustavi Sarkar, Assistant Professor, is a dancer-choreographer-educator-scholar. Sarkar has been performing and teaching Odissi, an Indian classical dance form from eastern India, for over a decade. Currently, she is the Artistic Director of an India-based organization dedicated to feminist, queer, and transnational issues pertaining to Indian classical dance called Kaustavi Movement Center. She has taught at Kenyon College and at The Ohio State University (OSU) from where she also received her Ph.D. in Dance Studies with interdisciplinary research interests in digital humanities, cultural studies, practice-as-research, queer studies, and religious studies. Her work is interdisciplinary with collaborations with specialists in 3D animation, computer science, virtual reality, responsive architecture, and web-text design. Sarkar has performed in numerous dance festivals and presented her scholarly/ creative research in conferences namely World Dance Alliance, Dance Studies Association, South Asian Studies Conference, Triangle Digital Humanities Institute, and Game Developers Conference. Her research has been published or currently accepted by Choreographic Practices, Performance Research, Research in Dance Education, Kairos: A Journal of Rhetoric, Technology, and Pedagogy, and Dance Research Journal. She employs entrepreneurial measures across her teaching, choreography, and writing instantiating and sustaining conversations across academe, performance, and business. She serves as the board member of the American College Dance Association. She has published an online workbook called Dancing Worlds (2018) with Great River Publishers. She is also working on her monograph Dance, Technology, Social Justice currently under review with McFarland Publishers. She also holds an MS in Economics with Minor in Finance, Texas A&M University (2006) and has work experience in the corporate sector for over a decade. Sarkar functions within the philosophy of Plavana meaning immersion, emerging from her South Asian training, of the dancing body in conversation with social, economic, religious, cultural, historical, technological, and political forces at play.


Learn more about Kaustavi’s Talk…

Title: Dance is Just

Description: Dance is a technology of coordinating different parts of the human body just as a sociological experiment of uniting multiple cultures. As a microcosm of the universe, movement can provide a just way of being in conversation with a difference across race, class, gender, sexuality, caste, and religion. In this way, dance can be truly a technology of social justice.

What do you want people to learn from your talk? Dance is truly integral to social change.

What action items do you want people to take away from your talk? Dance to live. Dance to breath. Dance to soar. Just Dance.


Learn more about Kaustavi…

Where is your hometown? Charlotte

What are your hobbies? dancing, reading, spiritual practice

What are you passionate about? spiritual practice

What draws you to Charlotte? Work

What is the best compliment you’ve received? You see the best in others.

What do you want to be remembered for? kindness

How do you push the boundaries? question normative ways of looking, being, and thriving

What does your happy place look like? A calm monastic locale.

What is one thing that you would like to share that is unknown about you? I love hard rock.

Where do you see Charlotte in 5 years? Closer to being a wider financial hub as well as an artistic junction.


The most important questions…

What animal will be our future overlords? Elephants