headshot photo of Dr. Nancy Martin

Dr. Nancy Martin

Professor, Chair, Department of Religious Studies
Director, Albert Schweitzer Institute
Wilkinson College of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences; Department of Religious Studies
Office Location: Smith Hall 202A
Office Hours: TTh 11-11:30am; 1-2:30pm
Phone: (714) 997-6608
University of Puget Sound, Bachelor of Arts
University of Chicago, Master of Arts
Graduate Theological Union, Ph.D.


Nancy M. Martin is Associate Professor and Chair of Religious Studies at Chapman University and a Life Member of Clare Hall, Cambridge University. Dr. Martin's areas of expertise include devotional Hinduism, Comparative Religious Ethics, and Gender and Religion. Her monograph on the Hindu woman saint Mirabai (Oxford University Press) is forthcoming, and her current projects include a study of oral musical and religious traditions in India entitled "The Rununciant Rani and the Weaver of Protest: Mirabai and Kabir in Rajasthani Folk Traditions"; a set of English translations of the poetry of Mirabai; and a documentary film examining religious harmony and violence in India, entitled "Patterns for Peace: India as a Model for Peace in a Multi-Religious Society."  featuring His Holiness the Dalai Lama. Dr. Martin is also working with Chapman colleagues Gail Stearns and Julye Bidmead to organize a conference on “Religious Genderings:  The Socio-Spiritual [Dis-]Empowerment of Women and Men” to be held at the University on February 26-28, 2014.  In addition she is a core faculty member within the Master of Arts in International Studies and Asian Studies Programs as well as the Department of Religious Studies and currently also serves on the Advisory Board for the California 3Rs Project on teaching religion in the public schools.

Dr. Martin's recent publications include “Mirabai Comes to America: The Translation and Transformation of a Saint” (The Journal of Hindu Studies 2010), an extended essay on Hindu ethics for the Brill’s Encyclopedia of Hinduism (2012), and “Fluid Boundaries and the Assertion of Difference in Low-caste Religious Identity” in Lines in the Water: Religious Boundaries in South Asia, edited by Tazim Kassam and Eliza Kent (2013).

Dr. Martin was the Co-Founder of an international educational society called the Global Ethics and Religion Forum, dedicated to fostering global ethical responsibility through increased interreligious cooperation and a deeper understanding of ethical issues at a global level. She served as the organization's Associate Director from 2001-2009, organizing a series of conferences in Southern California and at Cambridge University on topics from "Ecology and Global Health" to "War and Reconciliation," and co-editing a series of books, focusing on “The Meaning of Life,” “Love, Sex, and Gender,” “Human Rights and Responsibilities,” and “Ethics.” She has been an active participant in the Parliament of the World’s Religions and has lectured extensively on issues in comparative religious ethics in England, Canada, Spain, South Africa, Mexico, India, Thailand, China, and Australia as well as across the United States. In recognition of her expertise on Mirabai, Dr. Martin was invited to lecture on the saint at the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C in 2007.

“An Uneasy Truce:  Religion, Violence and the Pursuit of Peace”
Chapman University Town & Gown Invited Lecture
February 7, 2013

Faculty Research





Recent Creative, Scholarly Work and Publications

“Mirabai’s Poetry: The Worlding of a Hindu Woman Saint’s Dynamic Song Tradition.” The Wiley-Blackwell Companion to World Literature. Volume V. Edited by Ken Seigneurie and B. Venkat Mani. Chichester: Wiley-Blackwell, 2020.
“The Gendering of Voice in Medieval Hindu Literature.” The Bloomsbury Research Handbook of Indian Philosophy and Gender. Edited by Veena Howard. London: Bloomsbury Academic, 2019. Pages 97-123.
“Mirabai.” Revised. Oxford Bibliographies in “Hinduism.” Ed. Alf Hiltebeitel. New York: Oxford University Press, 2017, www.oxfordbibliographies.com.
Brueck, Laura R. Writing Resistance: The Rhetorical Imagination of Hindi Dalit Literature (New York: Columbia University Press, 2014). The Journal of Hindu Studies, 9, 3 (November 2016): 370-372.
“Fluid Boundaries and the Assertion of Difference in Low-caste Religious Identity.” Lines in the Water: Religious Boundaries in South Asia. Edited by Tazim Kassam and Eliza Kent. Syracuse: Syracuse University Press, 2013. Pages 239-267.
“Ethics.” Encyclopedia of Hinduism (Volume IV: History, Philosophy, Knowledge Traditions, Interreligious Contact). Edited by Knut A. Jacobson. Netherlands: Brill, 2012. Pages 677-691 (10,000 word essay).