Varshini Odayar

Varshini Odayar

Neuroscience and Social Anthropology
Class of 2023
Varshini Odayar

Varshini Odayar is a junior joint concentrating in Neuroscience and Social Anthropology with a Secondary in Global Health and Health Policy. She is from Cincinnati, Ohio and lives in Lowell House on campus! She is very interested in mental health advocacy with specific research interests in origins of stigma around mental illness as well as the role of colonial medicine, imperial projects, and neoliberalism in shaping multigenerational perceptions of mental illness in South Asia and beyond. She aims to investigate the relationships between gender, kinship, and cultural practice and their influence on understandings of mental illness. Beyond the classroom, Varshini is a Mellon Mays Fellow and volunteers with Indigo Peer Counseling and CrimsonEMS. This year, she is really excited to co-produce Ghungroo, a student-run production centering South Asian diaspora and culture. She also loves art and singing, and is always happy to chat about anthropology, research, and beyond! Please don't ever hesitate to reach out. 

Research Interests

Medical anthropology, global mental health, stigma, social medicine, engaged anthropology, colonial medicine, kinship, healthcare systems, health equity research.