Academic Profile

My main research interests are in the history of gender, sexuality, households and family in colonial north India. In 2019, Cambridge University Press published my first monograph, Governing Gender and Sexuality in Colonial India: The Hijra, c. 1850-1900 ( This book, the first in-depth history of the Hijra community, explored the colonial and postcolonial governance of gender and sexuality and the production of colonial knowledge. Governing Gender and Sexuality examined the criminalisation of Hijras and other gender non-conforming people under colonial law and their marginalisation by middle class Indian gender politics.

As a part of my research on histories of gender and the household, I have explored the history of slavery in northern India, as well as histories of childhood. My research has appeared in Modern Asian Studies, Gender & History and Asian Studies Review, among other journals.

I am currently working on a book project, provisionally titled 'Gendered Margins: Intimacy, Labour and the "Criminal Tribes" in Colonial India.' This project brings together approaches from gender and sexuality history, family history, legal history and labour history. 'Gendered Margins' builds upon my research on the gender history of communities designated as "criminal tribes," which grew out of a Tier 1 research grant on gender and caste.

I teach courses on gender history, South Asian history, colonialism, Indian Ocean slavery, historiography and archives. I have also supervised graduate and honours (FYP) students on these themes, especially in South Asian and Southeast Asian history.
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Assoc Prof Jessica Bridgette Hinchy
Associate Professor, School of Humanities

Areas of research interest:
- Gender and sexuality in South Asia
- Histories of households and families
- Colonialism, in particular colonial governance, law and forms of colonial knowledge
- Slavery in South Asia
- Childhood and age
  • Gender And The Making Of Caste Identities: Dalits In North India And Singapore
  • Hinchy, Jessica. Governing Gender and Sexuality in Colonial India: The Hijra, c. 1850-1900. Cambridge University Press, 2019.

  • Hinchy, Jessica. "The Eunuch Archive: Colonial Records of Non-Normative Gender and Sexuality in India." Culture, Theory and Critique 58, no. 2 (2017): 1-20.

  • Hinchy, Jessica. "The Sexual Politics of Imperial Expansion: Eunuchs and Indirect Colonial Rule in Mid‐Nineteenth‐Century North India." Gender & History 26, no. 3 (2014): 414-437.

  • Bowen, Zazie, and Jessica Hinchy (ed.) Children and Knowledge: Contemporary and Historical Perspectives from India. Routledge, 2020.

  • Jessica Hinchy. "Gender, Family, and the Policing of the ‘Criminal Tribes’ in Nineteenth-Century North India." Modern Asian Studies 54, no. 5 (2020): 1669-1711.