Professional and Biographical Information


Ph.D., University of Rochester (1969)
M.A., University of Rochester (1965)
B.A., University of Michigan (1963)
A.M. (honorary), Amherst College (1980)

Teaching Interests

I belong to two departments, Anthropology and Sociology and Asian Languages and Civilizations. Part of my normal teaching schedule consists of two courses dealing with India, and these courses are offered simultaneously in my two departments. One of these is a general introduction to India called "Indian Civilization." This course is strictly for beginners, but I also offer a more advanced course on India called "Religion and Society in the South Asian World." Many students take the latter without previous academic work on India, but some South Asian background is helpful in benefiting fully from the course. I also teach two courses on the more strictly anthropological side.  One of these, "The History of Anthropological Theory," deals with the development of anthropology as a discipline.  The other is a survey of anthropological writings about religion called "Anthropology of Religion." 

Awards and Honors

Amherst College Trustee Faculty Fellowship (for fieldwork in Singapore), 1973-1974.

American Institute of Indian Studies Senior Research Fellowship (declined), 1973.

Indo-American Fellowship (supported research on modern religious movements in Delhi), 1978-1979.

NEH Summer Stipend (for research on Jainism in Ahmedabad), l986.

Fulbright Senior Research Fellowship (research on Jain community in Jaipur), 1990-1991.

Agehananda Bharati Memorial Lecture, Syracuse University, April 1993.

University of Rochester, Distinguished Scholar Award, May 1994.

Amherst Faculty Fellowship (for preliminary work on merchant caste histories and clan goddesses in Rajasthan), 1995.

American Institute of Indian Studies Senior Research Fellowship (for research on origin myths, group identity, and clan goddesses among trading castes of Rajasthan), 1996-1997.

Getty Grant Program Fellowship (in support of collaborative research on Western Indian temples with Michael Meister and John Cort), 1996-1998.

Amherst Faculty Fellowship (for research on legal prohibition of animal sacrifice in Rajasthan), 2000.

Amherst Faculty Fellowship (for preliminary research on globalization and Jaipur's gemstone trade), 2002.

Shri Roop Lal Jain Lecture, University of Toronto : "Jainism and Social Identity" February 2004.

Senior Research Fellowship (NEH, administered by American Institute of Indian Studies, to support research on Jaipur's gemstone industry), 2005.

Visiting Professor, Le Centre d'études de l'Inde et de l'Asie du Sud (CNRS-EHESS), March 2006.

Annual Jain Lecture, SOAS, March 2007. 

See also: Selected Publications and Research Interests