The Review and Debates will be hosting Alyssa Ayres and Tunku Varadarajan for a conversation on Ayres’ new book, the wider South Asian dynamic, and the US-India relationship.
About the Guests
Alyssa Ayres is senior fellow for India, Pakistan, and South Asia at the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR). At CFR her work focuses on India’s role in the world and on U.S. relations with South Asia. In 2015, she served as the project director for the CFR-sponsored Independent Task Force on U.S.-India Relations, and from 2014 to 2016, as the project director for an initiative on the new geopolitics of China, India, and Pakistan. She directs the U.S. Relations with South Asia roundtable series, blogs regularly for Asia Unbound, and is a contributor to Forbes.com. Ayres served previously as deputy assistant secretary of state for South Asia from 2010 to 2013, covering all issues across a dynamic region of 1.3 billion people (Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, and Sri Lanka) and providing policy direction for four U.S. embassies and four consulates. Prior to serving in the Obama administration, Ayres was founding director of the India and South Asia practice at McLarty Associates from 2008 to 2010. Immediately prior, she served in the U.S. Department of State as special assistant to the undersecretary for political affairs as a CFR international affairs fellow. Prior to that she worked in the nonprofit sector at the Center for the Advanced Study of India at the University of Pennsylvania and at the Asia Society in New York. Her book on nationalism, culture, and politics in Pakistan, Speaking Like a State, was published worldwide by Cambridge University Press in 2009, and received the American Institute of Pakistan Studies book prize for 2011 and 2012. She has coedited three books on India and Indian foreign policy: Power Realignments in Asia, India Briefing: Takeoff at Last?, and India Briefing: Quickening the Pace of Change. Ayres has been awarded numerous fellowships and has received four group or individual Superior Honor Awards for work at the State Department. She received an AB magna cum laude from Harvard College, and an MA and PhD from the University of Chicago, where her dissertation was defended with distinction.
Tunku Varadarajan is the Virginia Hobbs Carpenter Research Fellow at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University and editor of Hoover’s in-house publication Defining Ideas. A contributing editor at POLITICO, he is a former editor of Newsweek and Newsweek International. Previously, he was executive editor (opinions) at Forbes, assistant managing editor and op-ed editor of the Wall Street Journal, and the New York bureau chief for The Times (of London). Born in India, he is a British citizen. An Adjunct Professor at New York University’s Department of Journalism, he is a former lecturer in law at Trinity College, Oxford. He has also taught at NYU’s Stern School of Business, the Graduate School of Journalism at Columbia University, and the City University of New York’s Graduate School of Journalism.
Read the review here.