The Department of Languages and Literature (DLL) – English, Anantapur Campus organised an online Guest Lecture on 20th January 2024 by Dr. Anhiti Patnaik on the topic, “Dominant, Residual, and Emergent Cultures in Harry Potter” for the students of MA (English) and BA (Advanced English) as a part of students’ capacity building programme. The speaker introduced the concept of Raymond Williams’ ‘Cultural Materialism’ by placing it within the framework of the Harry Potter series, the magical cultural sensation created by J.K. Rowling and later owned and taken over by fans. Using the dynamic diachronic approach advocated by Williams, Dr. Patnaik applied the three categories of culture, namely, the Dominant, Residual, and Emergent that evidenced themselves within the Harry Potter universe. She undertook a diegetic analysis of the books too, thus delving deeper into the story and demonstrating culture wars happening in the realm of characterization. Dr. Patnaik also brought in the perspectives of cultural theorists and scholars such as Stephen Greenblatt, Simone Murray, Henry Jenkins, and Vandana Saxena. In her interactive talk, Dr. Patnaik kept the audience engaged and enchanted as she presented her case with instances rooted in popular culture.
Dr. Anhiti Patnaik, Assistant Professor at the Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, BITS-Pilani, Hyderabad Campus, completed her PhD in Cultural Studies at Trent University, Canada on the Ontario Trillium Scholarship awarded to the best-qualified international students. Before pursuing her PhD at Trent, she completed her MPhil in English Literature at the University of Delhi. She was a Silver Medalist for her MA in English at St. Stephen’s College, Delhi, and was awarded the prize for the Best Student in English at Lady Shri Ram College for Women where she completed her BA (Hons). She was a recipient of the Symons Award for Excellence in Teaching Assistance at Trent University. Dr. Patnaik was a Fellow of The School of Criticism and Theory, at Cornell University and The Institute of World Literature, at Harvard University.