Visiting Associate Professor of Religious Studies
Pardee 328


  • Ph.D., Northwestern University

My interest in South Asian religions began during an undergraduate year spent as a student at Andhra University (in Vizag, A.P., India), where I studied the Telugu language, the mṛdangam (the traditional drum of South Indian classical music), and Indian philosophy. In graduate school, I continued my studies by focusing on ancient India, and the study of religion in general. My studies eventually led to a teaching career at Rutgers University, Princeton University, and now Lafayette College.

Research interests: Sanskrit Language and Literature; Myth and Ritual in South Asia; Vedic India; the Early Colonial Period in India; Methodological and Historiographic Issues in the Study of Religion and in the Study of India; Modern South Asian Literatures

Select publications:

The Vedic Origins of Karma: Cosmos as Man in Ancient Indian Myth and Ritual.

Karma. Hinduism: Oxford Bibliographies Online.

The Killing That Is Not Killing: Men, Cattle, and the Origins of Non–Violence (ahimsa) in the Vedic Sacrifice, Indo-Iranian Journal.

The Tale of ‘The Bride and the Monkey’: Female Insatiability, Male Impotence, and Simian Virility in Indian Literature. Journal of the History of Sexuality.

Vedic Agni. Hinduism: Oxford Bibliographies Online.

Whence Sanskrit? (kutaḥ saṃskṛtamiti): A Brief History of Sanskrit Pedagogy in the West. International Journal of Hindu Studies.

Editor, Ᾱcāryasamarparṇam: Studies in Honor of Edwin Gerow.

Co-editor with George Bond and Thomas Ryba. The Comity and Grace of Method: Studies in Honor of Edmund F. Perry.