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Subah Dayal

Assistant Professor
(212) 992-3736
1 Wash Pl, Room 616

Office Hours
Monday By Appt
Tuesday 2-4
Wednesday By Appt
Thursday By Appt
Friday By Appt

B.A. History and English, Rutgers University, 2005
M.A. History, Jawaharlal Nehru University, 2009
Ph.D. History, University of California, Los Angeles, 2016

Subah Dayal is a historian of the Indian Ocean, with a focus on early modern South Asia and the Persianate world. Her current book draws on literary and archival materials in Persian, Urdu, and Dutch to examine how regional household lineages in the Mughal empire’s peripheries transformed institutions and circulation networks in the Indian Ocean. Her research interests are in connected histories, household studies, comparative early modernities, global history, and pre-modern documentary and manuscript cultures. Her publications include "Vernacular Conquest? A Persian patron and his image in the 17th-century Deccan” in Comparative Studies of South Asia, Africa, and the Middle East (Duke, 2017); “Making the ‘Mughal’ Soldier: Ethnicity, Identification, and Documentary Culture in southern India 1600-1700” in the Journal of the Social and Economic History of the Orient (Brill, 2019), and “On Heroes and History: Responding to the Shahnama (The Book of Kings) in the Deccan 1500-1800,” which will appear in the edited volume, Iran and the Deccan: Persianate Art, Culture, and Talent in Circulation (Indiana University Press, 2020). Dayal also developed pedagogical approaches for teaching connected histories in the classroom through an NEH Summer Institute Fellowship in 2017 on "Beyond East and West: Exchanges and Interactions across the Early Modern World (1400-1800)." After receiving her BA from Rutgers University and Masters from the Center for Historical Studies at Jawaharlal Nehru University in New Delhi, Dayal earned her PhD in History from UCLA, where her research was funded by Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and the Institute of Historical Research at the University of London. Before coming to Gallatin, she was assistant professor of South Asian history at Tulane University and Clemson University.

Teaching and Research Interests

Indian Ocean before 1800, connected histories, medieval and early modern South Asia, historical sociology, the Persianate world, comparative Islamic empires, vernacular literature, household studies, migration and movement, global history, pre-modern documentary culture and manuscript studies

Recent News


Dayal’s article, “Making the ‘Mughal’ Solider: Ethnicity, Identification, and Documentary Culture in Southern India, c. 1600-1700,” is included in the Journal of the Economic and Social History of the Orient (vol. 2, Issue 5-6, pgs. 846-924, November 12, 2019).

Subah Dayal