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Visiting Author: Suchitra Vijayan: How Long Can the Moon Be Caged? Voices of Indian Political Prisoners

speaker photo
Graduate Reading Room, Main Library

Suchitra Vijayan is a writer, essayist, lawyer, and photographer working across oral history, state violence, and visual storytelling. She is the author of the critically acclaimed book Midnight's Borders: A People's History of Modern India (Melville House, New York). It included 40 original photographs and was "a genre-bending book of nonfiction—made of stories, encounters, vignettes, and photographs—about home, belonging, and displacement" by Electric Literature. 

Her second book, How Long Can the Moon Be Caged? Voices of Indian Political Prisoners (Pluto Press UK), co-authored with Francesca Recchia, is a powerful look at authoritarian India through the experiences of political prisoners. Her essays, photographs, and interviews have appeared in The Washington Post, Time Magazine, GQ, The Nation, The Boston Review, Foreign Policy, Lit Hub, Rumpus, Electric Literature, NPR, NBC, and BBC

As an attorney, she worked for the United Nations war crimes tribunals in Yugoslavia and Rwanda before co-founding the Resettlement Legal Aid Project in Cairo, giving Iraqi refugees legal aid. She is an award-winning photographer and the founder and executive director of the Polis Project, a hybrid research and journalism organization. She is the 2023 New York Foundation for the Arts Fellow in Nonfiction Literature. She teaches at NYU Gallatin and Columbia University’s Oral History Program and lives in New York.


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