Visiting Scholar, Alice Paul Center for Research on Gender, Sexuality and Women


Rupa Pillai is a senior lecturer of Asian American Studies at the University of Pennsylvania. She earned her PhD in anthropology from the University of Oregon. Her dissertation, Caribbean Hinduism on the Move, is the culmination of 15 months of ethnographic fieldwork with the growing Indo-Caribbean American community in New York City. Through this research, she explores how this community adapts and mobilizes Hinduism in this second migration, first from the Indian subcontinent and second from the Caribbean, to carve a space for themselves within the social landscape of New York City. While at the Alice Paul Center, Dr. Pillai will be working on her current project, “Reclaiming Shakti: Gender Justice in Little Guyana,” about feminist and queer interventions in Caribbean Hindu faith communities in New York City during the #MeToo era. Before joining Penn, Dr. Pillai taught at Brandeis University and Tufts University.


Cultural Studies and Cultural History Law, Politics, and Public Policy Social Change and Social Justice Women of Color Feminisms