Mark Liechty, PhD
History (South Asia, Nepal, cultural)
Building & Room:
1007 W Harrison St.
Mark Liechty is a South Asianist by training with research specialization in the modern culture and history of Nepal. At UIC his professional appointment is split between the Anthropology and History departments. His teaching at UIC focuses on world history, South Asian colonial history, culture theory, youth culture, and cultures of the body.
Liechty’s research has been supported by various organizations including several Fulbright research awards and a recent Fulbright “Senior Specialist” grant for Nepal. His first three books (2003, 2010, 2012) dealt with aspects of the emergence of a middle-class consumer culture in Kathmandu. His 2017 book on Western countercultural longing and the history of tourism (Far Out: Countercultural Seekers and the Tourism Encounter in Nepal, University of Chicago Press) won the 2017 Kekoo Naoroji Book Award for Himalayan Literature and the 2019 Edward Bruner Book Prize from the American Anthropological Association. Liechty was International Co-Investigator on a three-year interdisciplinary study of the 2015 Nepal earthquakes funded by the Arts & Humanities Research Council (UK) and based at the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London, where he was in residence in 2019. That work resulted in the 2021 co-edited book Epicentre to Aftermath: Rebuilding and Remembering in the Wake of Nepal's Earthquakes (Cambridge University Press). He has a 2022 book on the cultural history of hydropower generation in Nepal (What Went Right: Sustainability Versus Dependence in Nepal's Hydropower Development, Cambridge University Press) that examines how different approaches to “development” have yielded dramatically different results in terms of “capacity building” and local economic impact. He is currently working on a co-edited book on “Nepal in the Long 1950s.” His current research explores questions surrounding the cultural politics of Nepali sovereignty during the era of British colonialism in South Asia.