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Tibet | Himalayas | Borders

Gokul KS

Gokul K S

PhD Candidate

HSB 132, DoHSS, IIT Madras,
Chennai (600036), Tamil Nadu, India


Gokul K.S is a PhD Candidate in International Relations at IIT Madras researching “Visual Politics of Contemporary Tibetan Cinema and Filmmaking in Exile” under the supervision of Dr Sonika Gupta. Gokul co-curates Tibetscapes and is working on a Photo Essay Project documenting Tibetan Settlements in India. Gokul is also a film critic and cine enthusiast who writes about cinema, filmmaking, visual politics and aesthetics.

Academic Background

  • Doctoral Candidate in International Relations (2019 July-Present), Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, IIT Madras
  • M.A. in Politics & International Relations (2017-’19), School of International Relations and Politics (SIRP), Mahatma Gandhi University, Kerala
  • B.Com in Finance & Taxation (2014-’17), Mar Ivanios College, University of Kerala

Research Interests

Visual Politics & IR, Tibet Studies, Exile Cinema, Global South, IR Theory

Popular Commentaries, Reviews and Online Articles (Select)

2021. “Sonam Tseten’s ‘Pema’ and ‘Settlement’: Vignettes of Separation and Waiting in Exile.” Tibetscapes, Sep 11

2021. “Violence… Silence: Cinema Ormmakalile Kim Ki-duk.” Dionysian, edited by Sanal Haridas, Mythri Books (Malayalam)

2021. “Resettlement is Burial, Resistance is Resurrection: Contextualising This is not a Burial, It’s a Resurrection.” Global South Colloquy, Mar 14

2020. “Ama Khando: A Poignant Journey of Separation.” Tibetscapes, Nov 15

2020. “The Social Dilemma: Digital Frankensteins in the Age of Digital Capitalism.” Global South Colloquy, Oct 28

2020. “Da 5 Bloods: When Films Reimagine Visual Histories.” Global South Colloquy, Aug 21

2020. “Axone: Casual Racism, Politics of Social Space, and the Underbelly of Diversity.” Tibetscapes, June 22

2019. “Tranquillity of Visual Memory: The Tibet Film Festival.” Countercurrents, Nov 7


“Gokul KS talks to filmmaker Sonam Tseten,” Tibetscapes, Dec 17, 2021

“Gokul KS talks to director and writer Dhondup Tsering,” Tibetscapes, Dec 14, 2020

“Interview with actor and director, Tenzin Dalha: Art belongs to the people to dissect, dismiss or discuss,” Tibetscapes, Aug 9, 2020

Photo Essays

2021. “A Search for Reflections,” Tibetscapes, Nov 19

2020. “Monasteries of Mundgod: A Photo Essay on Doeguling Tibetan Settlement,” Tibetscapes, Mar 9

2019. “Three Places, Five Days: Majnu-ka-Tilla, McLeod Ganj and Dharamsala,” Tibetscapes, Oct 30

2019. “Bylakuppe Diaries: A Photologue,” Tibetscapes, Sep 9


International Visual Sociology Association (IVSA), 2021- present

Conference Presentations

  • Abstract titled “Location and Production of Tibetan Exilic Narratives” accepted for the 6th International Seminar of Young Tibetologists (ISYT) which will be held at the University of Virginia from August 1–5, 2022
  • Abstract titled “Aesthetics, Politics, Process: Tibetan Exile Filmmaking” accepted for the 16th IATS Conference which will be held at Charles University, Prague from July 3-9, 2022
  • Co-presented a paper with Prof Françoise Robin titled “Chinese, Indian, Nepalese, French, Canadian? The elusive Tibetan cinema” at Conference on National and Transnational Cinema co-organised by Waseda University and Université Libre de Bruxelles – February 26, 2022
  • Presented a paper at International Online Lecture Series, organised by KPS Menon Chair of SIRP, Mahatma Gandhi University, titled “Visualisation of Global Political Landscape: A Critical Analysis of Visual IR” – December 18, 2020
  • Presented a paper at International Conference on Visual Cultures in Contexts: Affect, Subversion and Resistance, jointly organised by Dept. of Media Studies, Christ University and CPracsis, titled “Tibetan Exile Cinema: Statelessness, Memory and Cultural Resistance”– February 19-20, 2020

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