Mark Liechty

Associate Professor


PhD, University of Pennsylvania, 1994


South Asia, Nepal

Topics of Interest

Cultural anthropology, anthropology of consumption, middle-class culture, mass media, culture theory, globalization, youth culture, cultural history, medical anthropology

Research Statement

Mark Liechty is a South Asianist by training with a research specialization in the modern culture and history of Nepal. His professional appointment at UIC is split between the Anthropology and History departments. Liechty’s first three books deal with aspects of the emergence of a middle-class consumer culture in Kathmandu. 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 awards. He recently completed a Fulbright “Senior Specialist” grant in Nepal and is finishing revisions on a book on the history of tourism in Nepal with the University of Chicago Press. He is now 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.

His research and teaching interests also include culture theory, globalization, cultural history, youth culture and medical anthropology.

Professor Liechty holds a 50% joint appointment with UIC's Department of History where he teaches courses on cultural history, world history and South Asian history. He is co-editor of the journal Studies in Nepali History and Society.

Selected Publications


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


Building the Road to Kathmandu: Notes on the History of Tourism in Nepal. Himalaya 25 (1-2): 19-28.


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


Women and Pornography in Kathmandu: Negotiating the "Modern Woman" in a New Consumer Society. In Images of the 'Modern Woman' in Asia: Global Media/Local Meanings. Shoma Munshi, ed. Pp. 34-54. London: Curzon Press.


Selective Exclusion: Foreigners, Foreign Goods, and Foreignness in Modern Nepali History. Studies in Nepali Society and History 2(1):5-68.


Taking Liberties: Women's Freedom and Sexual Harassment in Kathmandu. Labour, Capital, and Society 29(1-2):56-84.


Kathmandu as Translocality: Multiple Places in a Nepali Space. In Geography of Identity. Patricia Yaeger, ed. Pp. 98-130. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press.


Modernization, Media, and Markets: Youth Identities and the Experience of Modernity in Kathmandu, Nepal. In Youth Cultures: A Cross-Cultural Perspective. Vered Amit-Talia and Helena Wulff, eds. Pp. 166-201. London: Routledge.

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Contact Information

Office Phone (312) 413-3581