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Assistant Professor of Sociology, University of Memphis

Simranjit Steel is an Assistant Professor of Sociology. Her academic interests are united by an effort to understand the role of religion in modern society, particularly for religious minorities.

Dr. Steel received her PhD from Rice University in 2020. She is currently working on a book project examining the intersection of religion with race, national belonging, and gender for Sikhs in the western world. Specifically, she compares two Sikh communities, one of Indian Sikhs and another of primarily white converts to Sikhism, in two national contexts, the US and England. Other streams of her research look at religion and spirituality across national contexts, and religion and environmentalism. She primarily employs qualitative methods and a comparative lens to study these topics.

Dr. Steel's research can be found in Sociology of Religion, The Sociological Quarterly, Social Problems, Socius, Religions, and Environmental Politics. Her teaching interests include religion, race, immigration, religion and science, and urban inequality. She also values introducing students to the disciplinary lens of both sociology and religious studies in introductory courses of each discipline.


  • –present
    Assistant Professor of Sociology, University of Memphis


  • 2020 
    Rice University, Sociology