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"Of Monkeys and Migrants: The Multispecies Metropolis of Eeb Allay Ooo!"

with Rishika Mehrishi  


When: Monday, May 8 @ 4:00pm PST

Where: On Zoom and In-Person; link and room number coming soon


In this talk, I explore the multispecies entanglements between monkeys and migrant workers in New Delhi to query how bodies – human and nonhuman – are institutionally managed, materialized, and marginalized. I focus on Prateek Vats’s 2019 independent film Eeb Allay Ooo! which follows the story of migrant workers tasked with repelling monkeys that have taken over the government of India’s office premises in New Delhi. Tracing the metaphoric and metamorphic charge of simians, I interrogate the film’s emphasis on indeterminate, menacing, and transmutative animality that germinates at the heart of control and containment — the stuff of multispecies governance.


Rishika Mehrishi is a Postdoctoral Scholar at the Department of Theatre & Dance, University of California, San Diego. Her research interest in more-than-human performances in South Asia intersects multispecies ethnography, new materialism, and postcolonial studies. She is currently working on her first book, Animal Entanglements: Interspecies Performance in South Asia, that explores how nonhuman animals shape discourses and practices of religion, caste, class, gender and sexuality in India and its diasporas.