Zehra Jumabhoy received a Joint Honours BA in English Literature & Philosophy from Durham University (2001), a Masters in English Literature & Philosophy from Warwick University (2003) and a Masters in Art History from The Courtauld Institute of Art (2006), where she was awarded the Stavros S. Niarchos Trust Scholarship. Subsequently, Zehra was a Steven and Elena Heinz Scholar at The Courtauld, where she completed her PhD (2017), supervised by Professor Julian Stallabrass.

Titled, “Homi K. Bhabha’s Concept of National Identity and Contemporary Indian Art”, the PhD thesis placed Bhabha’s ideas in conversation with those of Geeta Kapur, India’s pre-eminent art historian. Since the theoretical battle between Bhabha and Kapur was waged in the context of Anish Kapoor and Nalini Malani’s installations, the project encompassed India’s major artistic movements from the 1950s to the early 2000s. It discussed Modern Indian artists (e.g. The Progressive Artists’ Group); the 1980s’ Baroda School painters (e.g. Bhupen Khakhar & Gulammohammed Sheikh); prominent contemporary practitioners (e.g. Atul Dodiya, Sheela Gowda & Bharti Kher) and diasporic South Asian artists (e.g. Zarina Hashmi). Dealing with the development of the idea of the Indian nation, and its intersection with Modern and Contemporary Indian art, the thesis explored the interstices between art history, political science, postcolonial theory and continental philosophy. Zehra is currently working on various peer-reviewed and other publications related to this research.

Research Interests

  • Modern and Contemporary South Asian, Asian and British art
  • Decolonization & Postcolonialism
  • Art & Empire
  • Nationalism
  • South Asian History
  • Postcolonial Theory
  • South Asian Partition & Cultural Memory
  •  ‘Black’ British Art
  • Continental Philosophy & Aesthetics
  • Art & Politics


The Courtauld Institute of Art, London, UK , July 2017

Research degree on Indian art & nationalism, supervised by Julian Stallabrass
Awarded The Steven and Elena Heinz PhD Scholarship

The Courtauld Institute of Art, London, UK, July 2006

MA, History of Art
Awarded The Stavros S. Niarchos Trust Scholarship

Warwick University, Coventry, UK, June 2003

MA, Philosophy and English Literature

Durham University, Durham, UK, June 2001

BA, Joint Hons, Philosophy and English Literature
Awarded The Overseas Merit Scholarship

Media Training

The first cohort selected for the AHRC-funded, ‘Becoming A Public Intellectual’, 2013-2014, a research skills training course designed for UK-based PhD candidates. (Read more)