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Photo of Liechty, Mark

Mark Liechty, PhD


Anthropology, Sociocultural


Building & Room:

BSB 3110D


1007 W. Harrison Street

Office Phone:

(312) 413-3581

CV Download:

Mark Liechty CV


I am a South Asianist by training with a research specialization in the modern culture and history of Nepal. My professional appointment at UIC is split between the Anthropology and History departments. My first three books deal with aspects of the emergence of a middle-class consumer culture in Kathmandu. My teaching at UIC focuses on world history, South Asian colonial history, culture theory, youth culture, and cultures of the body. My research has been supported by various organizations including several Fulbright research awards and a recent Fulbright “Senior Specialist” grant for Nepal. I recently published a major book on Western countercultural longing and the history of tourism entitled Far Out: Countercultural Seekers and the Tourism Encounter in Nepal (Chicago, 2017) which received the 2017 Kekoo Naoroji Book Award for Himalayan Literature. I am currently working on a research/book project on the cultural history of hydropower generation in Nepal that examines how different approaches to “development” have yielded dramatically different results in terms of “capacity building” and local economic impact. I am also 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), Univ. of London where I will be in residence for six months in 2019.

Selected Publications

Himalayas in the Western Mind’s Eye: “Incredibly Spiritual and Marvelous.” Economic and Political Weekly (Mumbai) 53(19):32-36, May 12.

Far Out: Countercultural Seekers and the Tourist Encounter in Nepal. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. (Winner of the 2018 Kekoo Naoroji Book Award for Himalayan Literature.)

The Global Middle Classes: Theorizing Through Ethnography. Santa Fe: SAR Press. Edited, with Rachel Heiman and Carla Freeman.

Middle Class Déjà Vu: Conditions of Possibility from Victorian England to Contemporary Kathmandu. In The Global Middle Classes: Theorizing Through Ethnography. Rachel Heiman, Carla Freeman, and Mark Liechty, eds. Pp. 271-300. Santa Fe: SAR Press.

Out Here in Kathmandu: Modernity on the Global Periphery. Kathmandu: Martin Chautari Press.

Carnal Economies: The Commodification of Food and Sex in Kathmandu. Cultural Anthropology 20(1):1-38.

Suitably Modern: Making Middle-Class Culture in a New Consumer Society. Princeton: Princeton University Press

Service to Community

Founding co-editor (since 1996) of the interdisciplinary Nepal Studies journal Studies in Nepali History and Society (SINHAS).

Notable Honors

2017 - Present, International Co-Investigator on collaborative grant, Arts & Humanities Research Council (UK), School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London

2014, "Fulbright Specialist" Appointee, US Department of State

2009, Advanced Seminar Participant, School for Advanced Research (Santa Fe), March-April

2007-2008, Fulbright Faculty Research Abroad Grant, US Department of State


University of Pennsylvania, Department of Anthropology, 1986-1994
Ph.D. Anthropology dissertation advisor: Arjun Appadurai

Goshen College, Goshen Indiana, 1978-1983
B.A. History; B.A. Biology

Woodstock International School, Mussoorie, Uttarakhand, India, graduate, 1978