Associate Professor • Graduate Chair


Ph.D., Sociology, University of Chicago, 2007
M.A., University of Chicago
B.A., Barnard College

CAS Speaker Bureau Topic(s)


Research Interests

Gender; Globalization; Culture; Religion, including Islam; Social Movements; Southeast Asia

Regional and Thematic Interests

Southeast Asia
Gender; Religion; Government/Political Systems


Rachel Rinaldo is a cultural sociologist interested in gender and social change, particularly in the context of Muslim societies and Southeast Asia.  Her first book Mobilizing Piety: Islam and Feminism in Indonesia is an ethnographic study of Muslim and secular women activists in Indonesia, and examines the different ways these activists engage with global discourses of Islam and feminism. She is currently doing research on marriage and divorce in Indonesia, and on the Muslim fashion industries in the US and Indonesia. 

Selected Publications

2015. Avishai, Orit, Afshan Jafar, and Rachel Rinaldo. "A Gender Lens on Religion." Gender & Society 29.1: 5-25.

2013. Rachel Rinaldo. Mobilizing Piety: Islam and Feminism in Indonesia (Oxford University Press).

2014. Rachel Rinaldo. “Pious and Critical: Muslim Women Activists and the Question of Agency.” Gender & Society 28/6, pp: 824-246.

2008. Rachel Rinaldo. “Envisioning the Nation: Women Activists, Religion, and the Public Sphere in Indonesia.” Social Forces 86/4, pp. 1781-1804.