Amanda Randhawa

Amanda Randhawa

Amanda Randhawa

Presidential Fellow, Ph.D. Candidate, Department of Comparative Studies

Areas of Expertise

  • Ethnography
  • South Asian Religion and Culture
  • Modern South Asia
  • Narrative Theory
  • Gender
  • Diaspora
  • Folklore


  • Ph.D. (ABD), Comparative Studies, The Ohio State University
  • M.A., Languages and Cultures of Asia, University of Wisconsin-Madison
  • B.A., Languages and Cultures of Asia, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Amanda Randhawa is a PhD candidate at The Ohio State University specializing in South Asian religion and folklore, ethnography, and women’s rituals and expressive traditions. Her current research establishes a broader template for how we understand diaspora communities through her work among Sikhs, a minority community living within India, 1,500 miles south of their cultural and religious homeland. Her work with Punjabi Sikh women living in this internal diaspora in the south Indian state of Tamil Nadu combines her regional interests in both north and south India. This work also contributes to larger questions about diasporic resettlement, including how migrant groups learn to coexist with diverse communities, renegotiating their gendered, religious, and cultural identities in the process. Amanda also writes about Punjabi Hindu and Sikh women’s shared religious practices in northern Punja. Her previous writing explores the interdependence of narrative and ritual practice in rural Tamil Nadu. She also has a publication in process on the proverb, “This too, Shall Pass” (with Amy Shuman).

Amanda was selected as a William J. Fulbright Research scholar twice and a Critical Language Scholar (U.S. Department of State). She is a recipient of a Foreign Language and Area Studies (FLAS) grant and various other awards and grants through The Ohio State University. She was a participant in the University of Wisconsin-Madison College Year in India Program (Madurai), the South Asian Summer Language Institute Tamil Program, the American Institute of Indian Studies Advanced Punjabi Language Program, and The Ohio State University’s Project Narrative Summer Institute on Feminist and Queer Studies. She founded and served as president of the South Asian Graduate Studies Organization for three years and has been teaching Religious and South Asian Studies courses with a focus on gender for over a decade.