Sarah Besky

I am Associate Professor in the Department of Global Labor and Work in the ILR School at Cornell University. 

Before coming to Cornell, from 2015-2020, I was Charles Evans Hughes 1881 Assistant Professor in the Department of Anthropology and the Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs at Brown University. From 2012-2015, I was a postdoctoral fellow in the Michigan Society of Fellows.  I received my Ph.D. from the Department of Anthropology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2012. 

I have studied the Indian tea industry since 2006 and published two books (The Darjeeling Distinction and Tasting Qualities) and several articles based on this research.  I also co-edited the School for Advanced Research volume How Nature Works with Alex Blanchette (Tufts University). 

My new research is a historical ethnography of the concept of settlement in colonial and postcolonial India. It draws on work in Kalimpong, West Bengal, on the India-Bhutan border and explores the intersections of farming, science, agricultural extension, land tenure, and climate change.