School of Social and Political Science

Dr Shruti Chaudhry

Job Title

British Academy Postdoctoral Fellow


Room number


Street (Address)

21 George Square

City (Address)


Country (Address)


Research interests

Research interests

  • Family, Marriage & Intimate Relationships
  • Minority Ethnic Families
  • Relationality
  • Social Inequalities
  • Gender-based Violence
  • Ageing & Life-course; Older People
  • Migration
  • Ethnography & Qualitative Research
  • South Asia, India, Scotland
  • South Asian Diaspora




BA (Hons) Sociology, University of Delhi

MA Sociology, Delhi School of Economics, University of Delhi

M.Phil Sociology, Delhi School of Economics, University of Delhi

PhD Sociology, University of Edinburgh

Current Research

I am currently a British Academy Postdoctoral Fellow (2019-23). My research focuses on the relational lives of adults (50+) of South Asian heritage (Indian Sikhs and Pakistani Muslims) in Scotland (Edinburgh and Glasgow). It aims to theorise about family life in relation to social change and cultural diversity (and indeed diversity within ethnic minority populations). The health parameters of South Asians and the white population are distinctive: South Asians are more likely to suffer from ill-health, often chronic illnesses, at younger ages and they face greater health care challenges. Furthermore, South Asians are assumed to ‘care for their own’, yet South Asian families are in a state of flux (just like white British families). The research explores the implications of such changes for ageing and the allocation of care and the role of other actors such as religious institutions (mosques and gurudwaras), NGOs/charities and neighbourhood and friendship networks in supporting ‘traditional’ care systems.

Research Questions

(1) How can changes in diasporic Sikh and Muslim families inform current theorising of care, relationality and family life?

(2) How are changes in culturally diverse South-Asian heritage families shaping experiences of ageing?

(3) Has change meant a decline in the centrality of the family in the lives of minority ethnic ageing adults? If so, what sorts of relationships (if any) have come to take their place?

Doctoral Research

I completed a PhD in Sociology in 2016 from the University of Edinburgh. My doctoral research was based on eleven months of ethnographic fieldwork in a village in the north Indian state of Uttar Pradesh. It compared the lived-experiences of marriage for women in ‘regional’ marriages (that conform to caste and community norms with a relatively small marriage distance) with women in ‘cross-regional’ marriages (that cross caste, linguistic and state boundaries and entail long-distance migration). By distinguishing where distance makes a difference, it aimed to challenge moral panics and simplistic assumptions about ‘problematic wives’ who are brought from far away. Through a focus on the ‘everyday’, it highlighted how women’s post-marital experiences in relation to their work and social relationships, their capacity to control their sexual and reproductive careers and their ability to mobilise support in the event of marital abuse or distress is shaped by a range of factors (caste, class/poverty, religion and stage in the life-course). It provided an empirically-informed approach to the gendering of intimacy in an arranged marriage context thereby offering an alternative to Euro-American understandings of intimacy and women's agency



2021. Moving for Marriage: Inequalities, Intimacy and Women's Lives in Rural North India. SUNY Press (Albany: New York) book series Genders in the Global South.     


2019. 'For how long can your piharwale intervene?' Accessing Natal kin support in rural north India. Modern Asian Studies, 53 (5): 1613-45.

2019. 'Flexible' caste boundaries: Cross-regional marriage as 'mixed' marriage in rural north India. Contemporary South Asia, 27 (2): 214-28.

2018. 'Now it is difficult to Get Married': Contextualising Cross-Regional Marriage and Bachelorhood in a North Indian Village, in Sharada Srinivasan and Shuzhuo Li (eds.). Scarce Women and Surplus Men in China and India: Macro Demographics versus Local Dynamics. Cham: Springer.

2011 with Devi Mohan, Taneesha. ‘Of Marriage and Migration: Bengali and Bihari Brides in a U.P. Village’. Indian Journal of Gender Studies 18 (3): 311-340.

Book Reviews

Qureshi, Kaveri. 2019. Chronic Illness in a Pakistani Labour Diaspora. Durham, NC: Carolina Academic Press. In The Sociological Review (October 2020).

Grover, Shalini. 2011. Marriage, Love, Caste and Kinship Support: Lived Experiences of the Urban Poor in India. In Sociology 47 (1) (February 2013).

Tomalin, E., Subramaniam, M. and Bradley, T. (Eds.). Dowry: Bridging the Gap between Theory and Practice. In Indian Journal of Gender Studies 19 (1) (February 2012).

Reddy, G. 2010. With Respect to Sex: Negotiating Hijra Identity in South India’. In Indian Journal of Gender Studies 17 (3) (September-December, 2010).

Blog Posts

Covid-19 Public Health Messages and Minority Ethnic Older People in Scotland. Discover Society, September 11, 2020.

Marriage and Migration: Bengali and Bihari Brides in Badaun, Uttar Pradesh. South Asia @ LSE , November 14, 2012.

Works within