Dr Alice Tilche

Lecturer in Anthropology and Museum Studies

School/Department: Museum Studies, School of

Telephone: +44 (0)7963 658 916




Alice Tilche is a lecturer in Art, Anthropology and Museum Studies. Her research at the intersection of art and activism employs visual, collaborative and arts-based methods to research social transformations.  Recent research projects include work on the cultural politics of indigeneity, migration, nationalism and most recently Covid-19.  Alice’s book Adivasi Art and Activism: curation in a nationalist age was published with Washington University Press in 2022. Her collaborative film projects including Sundarana (2011), Broken Gods (2019) and Budhan-Podcast (2021) have been selected for a number of international film screenings and festivals.


Alice is currently running several collaborative research projects aimed at capturing the experience of the pandemic among India’s most marginal indigenous and nomadic communities through arts-based methodologies. In the past she has conducted research projects on indigenous art and activism; art, religion and nationalism; and on migration and rural transformation. Her research has been funded by the Wenner-Gren Foundation, the British Academy, the Leverhulme Trust and the Arts and Humanities Research Council UK among others. 

Research Projects

Supporting Indigenous Creative Economies in a Digital Age (2022-23)

Disturbing Images: visualising the Covid-19 pandemic at India's margins (2022-23)

Using the arts to mitigate the impact of Covid-19 among India's indigenous and nomadic communities (AHRC, 2020-2022)

Making and unmaking indigeneity: art, religion and inequality in India (Leverhulme Trust, 2015-2019)

Rural change and anthropological knowledge in post-colonial India (ESRC, 2011-2015, research fellow)






Tilche. 2022.  Asivasi Art and Activism: Curation in a Nationalist Age. University of Washington Press

Simpson, E. and Tilche, A. 2016. The future of the rural world? India's villages 1950-2015. SOAS: University of London

Journal Articles

Tilche, A. 2022. Broken Gods: collaborating with communities in troubled times. American Anthropologist (forthcoming). 

Tilche, A. and Simpson, E. 2018. Marriage and the crisis of peasant society in Gujarat, India. Journal of Peasant Studies, 45(7): 1518-1538

Tilche, A. and Simpson, E. 2018.  On trusting ethnography: methods, self, and the agency of fields of Gujarat, India. Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute, 23(4): 690 78

Simpson, E., Tilche, A. Jeffery, P. Otten, T. Sbriccoli, T. 2017. A brief history of incivility in rural India, 1950-2015. Caste, religion and anthropology. Comparative Studies in Society and History. 60 (1): 58-59

Tilche, A. 2016. Migration, bachelorhood and discontent among the Patidars. Economic and Political Weekly, 51(26-27): 17-24

Tilche, A. 2015. A forgotten Adivasi landscape: memory and museums in western India. Contributions to Indian Sociology. 49 (2): 188-215

Tilche, A. 2014. Pithora in the time of kings, elephants and art dealers: art and social change in western India. Visual Anthropology. 20(1): 1-20

Book Chapters

Tilche, A. 2021. Budhan-Podcast: a community arts podcast about health and rights during the Covid-19 Pandemic. Pandemics in Asia. Madhu Singh (ed).

Tilche, A. 2019. Migration, bachelorhood and discontent among the Patidars. In India’s villages in the 21st century. S. Jhodka and E. Simpson (eds).

Tilche, A. 2019 Art and religious reform among the Rathavas of western India. Brill’s encyclopaedia of the religions among the indigenous people of South Asia. Carrin, M. & H. Tambs-Lyche (eds). Brill.

Tilche, A. 2005. Translating museums. In G.N. Devy, Geoffrey V. Davis, K.K. Chakravarty (eds) Indigeneity: Culture and Representation. New Delhi: Orient Blackswan.

Book Reviews

Tilche, A. 2011. Sacrificing people. An invasion of a tribal landscape. Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute. 2, 17

Tilche, A. 2009. Hindu nationalism: a reader (C. Jaffrelot) Contemporary South Asia. 17, 3


2021. Budhan-podcast (multimedia project in collaboration with Budhan Theatre and the Adivasi Academy).

2019. Broken gods. Directed by Dakxin Bajrange Chhara & Alice Tilche. 42 min. Nomad Movies.

2013. Sundarana. Directed by Dakxin Bajrange Chhara & Alice Tilche. 43 min. Nomad Movies.



indigenous art and museums

art and activism 

art and anthropology  

migration, mobility and displacement especially in relation to art and heritage

art, religion and nationalism

visual and multimodal methodologies


Locating Art (MA in Art Museums and Gallery Studies)

Indigenous Museologies (MA in Museum Studies)


BA (Hons), Social Anthropology, SOAS

MSc Visual, Material and Museum Anthropology, Oxford

PhD Social Anthropology, SOAS

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