Shanti Kumar is an Associate Professor in the Department of Radio-Television-Film and a faculty affiliate in the Department of Asian Studies, the Center for Asian-American Studies and the South Asia Institute at the University of Texas-Austin. He serves on the Advisory Committee of the South Asia Institute, and has been a member of the Executive Committee at the Center for Asian-American Studies.
Before joining UT in 2006, Prof. Kumar taught at the University of Wisconsin in Madison and the University of North Texas in Denton. He received his B.Sc. degree in Math, Physics and Chemistry from Osmania University, Hyderabad in India in 1987. He received a B.A. in Communication and Journalism in 1988, and an M.A. in Communication and Journalism in 1989, also from Osmania University. He received an M.A. in Media Studies from Texas Christian University in 1994, and Ph.D. in Telecommunications from Indiana University-Bloomington in 1998.
Prof. Kumar is the author of Gandhi Meets Primetime: Globalization and Nationalism in Indian Television (University of Illinois Press, 2006). The book examines how cultural imaginations of nationalism have been transformed by the rapid growth of satellite and cable television in India since 1991. Prof. Kumar is the co-editor of Planet TV: A Global Television Reader (New York University Press, 2003). Planet TV provides a critical overview of the rapidly changing landscape of global television by combining previously-published essays by pioneers in global television studies with new work by scholars who refine and extend intellectual debates in this emerging field. Prof. Kumar has published book chapters in several edited anthologies and articles in journals such as BioScope, Jump Cut, Popular Communication, South Asian Journal, South Asian Popular Culture, Television and New Media and Quarterly Review of Film and Video. He has also written columns and short essays for online journals such as Flowtv.org, Antenna and In Media Res. He is currently working on a book about the globalization of regional cinemas in India, focusing particularly on Telugu cinema in the state of Andhra Pradesh.
At UT, Prof. Kumar teaches undergraduate courses such as "Introduction to Global Media," "Technology and Culture," "Global Media Cultures," "Music Television and Global Culture," "History of Indian Cinema and Television," and "Bollywood and Global Culture." Among the graduate seminars he teaches are "Media Theory and Literature," Global Media and Cultural Studies," "Media in South Asia" and "Postcolonial Theory and Criticism."
Prof. Kumar has professional experience in journalism, advertising and multimedia industries in India. He worked as a sub-editor and a reporter for Deccan Chronicle which is the largest-selling English-language newspaper in the state of Andhra Pradesh in India. He also worked as a multimedia designer and scriptwriter in the Education and Training Division at CMC Limited; one of the leading information technology firms in India.