Kristin Plys

Kristin Plys

Assistant Professor Sociology
Office Location:
3359 Mississauga Road
Mississauga , ON
L5L 1C6

Kristin Plys (Ph.D. 2016, Sociology, Yale University) is an Assistant Professor of Sociology at the University of Toronto Mississauga. Professor Plys’ research sits at the intersection of political economy, postcolonial theory, sociology of development, labor and labor movements, historical sociology, and global area studies. The greater part of her intellectual work analyses the historical trajectory of global capitalism as seen from working class and anti-colonial movements in the Global South. This research program has led her to take a particular interest in “Third World” political economy in the mid-20th century, shifts in the global trade balance between Early Modern Europe and Asia, the theories of political economy that help to analyse these historical phenomena, along with temporality and historical method in the historical social sciences. 

Her first book, Brewing Resistance: Indian Coffee House and the Emergency in Postcolonial India (Cambridge University Press, 2020) uncovered histories of the resistance movement that was launched from New Delhi’s vibrant café culture during India’s brief period of dictatorship (1975-77). In addition, she is currently working on a book with Charles Lemert called, Capitalism and its Uncertain Future (Routledge, New York). Her current research in-progress investigates how visual artists, poets, Maoists, Communists, and trade unionists fomented opposition against Pakistan’s 1977 military coup through a ‘cultural front’ that innovated new forms of anti-authoritarian painting and poetry rooted in Lahore’s café culture.

She has published articles in a range of journals, including Theory and SocietyTheory, Culture and Society,  Review (Fernand Braudel Center), Critical Sociology, European Journal of Sociology, and Economic and Political Weekly. In addition to sociology, she is affiliated with the Centre for South Asian Civilizations (UTM) and Culinaria (UTSC). . 



Kristin Plys. 2020. Brewing Resistance: Indian Coffee House and The Emergency in Postcolonial India Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 


Kristin Plys. (Online first). “The Poetry of Resistance: Poetry as solidarity in postcolonial anti-authoritarian movements in Islamicate South Asia” Theory, Culture & Society 36(7-8).
DOI: 10.1177/0263276419882735 

Kristin Plys. (Online first). “Time and World-History” Critical Sociology 
DOI: 10.1177/0896920519853035          

Kristin Plys (2019). “Subaltern Historiography, the Working Class, and Social Theory for the Global South” Economic & Political Weekly 54(43). 

Kristin Plys. (2019). “Violence as a Tactic of Social Protest in Postcolonial India: From the Railway Workers’ Strike to the Baroda Dynamite Conspiracy, 1974-6” European Journal of Sociology/Archives Européennes de Sociologie  60(2): 171-211. 

Kristin Plys. (2017). “Political Deliberation and Democratic Reversal in India: Indian Coffee House during The Emergency (1975-77) and the Third World 'Totalitarian Moment”, Theory and Society 46(2): 117-142. 

Kristin Plys. (2016). “Immanuel Wallerstein.” In Oxford Bibliographies in Sociology. Ed. Janeen Baxter. NewYork: Oxford University Press.

Kristin Plys. (2016). “Worker Self-Management in the Third World, 1952-1979”, International Journal of Comparative Sociology, 57(1): 1-28.

Kristin Plys. (2015). “World-Systems Analysis and its Relevance for Kerala Today,” Journal of Polity and Society August.

Kristin Plys. (2015). “Book review of Workers’ Self-Management in the Caribbean: The Writings of Joseph Edwards by Joseph Edwards,”International Journal of Comparative Sociology 56(3-4): 299-301.

Kristin Plys. (2014). “Financialization, Crisis, and the Development of Capitalism in the United States”, World Review of Political Economy 5(1): 24-44.

Kristin Plys. (2014). “Book review of The Darjeeling Distinction by Sarah Besky”, International Journal of Comparative Sociology 55(4): 345-347.

Kristin Plys. (2013). “Eurocentrism and the Origins of Capitalism”, Review (Fernand Braudel Center) 36(1): 41-81.

Kristin Plys. (2012). “World Systemic and Kondratieff Cycles”, Yale Journal of Sociology 9: 130-160.


Political Economy; Postcolonial Theory; Capitalism; Colonialism/Imperialism; Economic History; Labour and Labour Movements; Labour History; Food History; Café Culture; Comparative and Historical Sociology; Oral History; The Global South; South Asian Studies


Ph.D. (Yale)
B.A. (Johns Hopkins) 


Current Courses: 
SOC434H5, SOC444H5, SOC454H5