Her areas of interest include Hindu and Buddhist traditions in India, Sri Lanka, and North America. Her research focuses on the intersection of religion, gender, and human mobilities, and the reconstruction of religious, cultural, and ethnic communities in North America. She utilizes historical and social scientific research methods, and has conducted field studies among religious communities in South Asia and North America. Her research interests include: Religion and Immigration/Diaspora Studies, Nonviolence Studies, Transnational Religious Traditions, Indian Philosophy, Ritual Studies, Goddesses, Issues of Identity and Belonging, and Women, Religion & Gender. Dr. Spina teaches courses on South Asian religious traditions in the Department of Religion, and also serves on the faculty of the Center for Asian Studies. Dr. Spina is currently program Co-chair for the American Academy of Religion, Religion and Migration Unit. Her 2017 monograph is entitled, “Women’s Authority and Leadership in a Hindu Goddess Tradition,” Palgrave Macmillan.
PhD, McMaster University (Canada)