William Pinch’s research addresses the following themes:
- Asceticism, the nation, and the state in South Asia
- Military culture, war, and violence, especially in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries
- The intersection of maritime history, world history, and environmental history
- Theory and method in history
He is currently working on three projects:
1) a translation, with two colleagues at Columbia University, of two long eighteenth-century Hindi poems celebrating the warlord Anupgiri Gosain, a.k.a. “Himmat Bahadur” (d. 1804)
2) a speculative microhistory of 1857, centered on the eruption of violence in Meerut
3) an examination of the immediate aftermath and local perceptions of the Battle of Panipat in 1761, in collaboration with a colleague at Delhi University
He is the author of numerous book chapters, essays, and reviews, as well as articles in History and Theory, Past & Present, Modern Asian Studies, and Indian Economic and Social History Review.
He is an associate editor of the journal History and Theory.
And he has authored two books plus an edited volume:
- Warrior Ascetics and Indian Empires (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2006; paperback edition, 2012)
- Peasants and Monks in British India (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1996; Delhi: Oxford India Paperbacks, 1999)
- Speaking of Peasants: Essays in Indian History and Politics in Honor of Walter Hauser (New Delhi: Manohar, 2008), edited festschrift volume