Zaheer Baber

Professor, Department of Sociology
Center for South Asian Studies


(905) 569-4348


3359 Mississauga Road North South Building, Room 2077A


Zaheer is a general sociologist whose broad research interests include social theory, science, technology and society, comparative and historical sociology, race and racial projects, visual sociology etc. He is currently engaged in a SSHRC funded project on the role of botanical gardens and colonial rivalries in the emergence of Botany as a science. His books include The Science of Empire (1996), Secularism, Communalism and the Intellectuals (2006), CyberAsia (editor, 2005), Society, History and the Global Human Condition (co-editor with Joseph M. Bryant, 2010) and he is a frequent contributor of review-essays to the Times Literary Supplement and Nature.

In addition to Sociology, he is affiliated with the Institute of Communication, Culture and Information Technology, Centre for South Asian Studies at the Munk School of Global Affairs and Public Policy and the Knowledge, Media and Design Institute. His previous institutional affiliations include University of Victoria, National University of Singapore, University of Tokyo as the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science Fellow, and the University of Saskatchewan as the Canada Research Chair.


Ph D. University of Toronto (1993)
M.Phil. University of Delhi (1984)

awards and distinctions

Canada Research Chair, University of Saskatchewan 2001-05
Japan Society for the Promotion of Science Fellow, December 1997

selected publications

 “Of Research, Revenue and Whales: Scientific Research in the Tropics” Asian Journal of Social Science, in press.

Whitey on the Moon: Politics of NASA” Cover Feature, The Times Literary Supplement, 1st September, 2017. 

 “The Plants of Empire: Botanic Gardens, Colonial Power and Botanic Knowledge”, Journal of Contemporary Asia, Vol. 46, Issue 4, 2016

The Science of Empire: Scientific Knowledge, Civilization and Colonial Rule in India. Albany: State University of New York Press, 1996.

(editor) CyberAsia: The Internet and Society in Asia Boston and Leiden: Brill, 2005.

Secularism, Communalism and the Intellectuals. Gurgaon: Three Essays, 2006.

“Public Transportation in an Era of Neo-Liberal Globalization: The Delhi Metro” Inter-Asia Cultural Studies Vol. 11, October, 2010.

“When Rabbits Mate with Hens” The Times Literary Supplement 12 September 2014.


Classical Sociological Theory
Global Sociology
Advanced Projects

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