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Vrinda Narain

Assistant Professor

3674 Peel Street
Room 203
Montreal, Quebec
Canada H3A 1W9

514-398-4927 [Office]
vrinda [dot] narain [at] mcgill [dot] ca (Email)

Vrinda Narain

Focus online: Research profile: Vrinda Narain (April 2011)
Download: Publications list [.docx] (April 2013)

Media appearances:

September 13, 2013, CTV interview (video 2:41) with Toronto news anchor, Marcia Macmillan, in response to  the Indian Court sentence in the infamous gang rape and murder case of last December.

January 30, 2014, Interview with Global News on Canadian Muslim hipsters defying stereotypes.

October 14, 2014, Interview [.mp3] on CJAD's The Exchange with Dave Kaufman on Malala Yousafzai receiving the Nobel Peace Prize.


Dr. Vrinda Narain is an Assistant Professor at McGill University where she holds a joint appointment in the Faculty of Law and the Institute for Gender, Sexuality and Feminist Studies in the  Faculty of Arts. She is also a Research Associate at the Institute for Reconciliation and Social Justice at the University of the Free State, South Africa. Her  research and teaching focus on constitutional law, social diversity  and feminist legal theory. ;

She is the author of two books: Reclaiming the Nation: Muslim Women and the Law in India (University of Toronto Press, 2008) and Gender and Community: Muslim Women's Rights in India (University of Toronto Press, 2001).


Assistant Professor, Faculty of Law & Faculty of Arts, McGill University, 2008-

Boulton Fellow, Faculty of Law, McGill University, 2007-2008

Visiting Research Fellow, Asian Institute, Munk Centre for International Studies, University of Toronto, 2006-2007

Areas of Interest

Constitutional law, feminist legal theory, social diversity and law, postcolonial studies and law, critical race theory.



Vrinda Narain, Reclaiming the Nation: Muslim Women and the Law in India. University of Toronto Press, 2008, 224 pp.

Vrinda Narain, Gender and Community: Muslim Women’s Rights in India. University of Toronto Press, 2001, 202 pp. Nominated for the Canadian Women’s Studies Association Book of the Year Award, 2003.

Refereed journal articles

Vrinda Narain, “Taking “Culture” out of Multiculturalism”, December 2013, Canadian Journal of Women and the Law.
LINK: Taking 'Culture' out of Multiculturalism [.pdf]

Vrinda Narain. "Muslim Women's Equality in India: Applying a Human Rights Framework." Human Rights Quarterly 35.1 (2013): 91-115.
LINK: Muslim Women's Equality in India: Applying a Human Rights Framework

Vrinda Narain, “Water as a Fundamental Right: A Perspective from India”, Vermont Law Review, 2010 Vol.34 No.4, pp. 917-926.
LINK: Water as a Fundamental Right: A Perspective from India

“Muslim Women, Family Law and Equal Citizenship in India”, Journal for Semitics, Vol. 16, No. 2, 2007, pp. 498-517.

“Muslim Women’s Rights and the Accommodation of Difference”, University of Southern California Review of Law and Women’s Studies, Vol. 1, Fall 1998, pp. 43-72.

Other refereed articles and book chapters

Vrinda Narain, “Transformatory Jurisprudence: The Supreme Court of India and Maintenance for Muslim Women”, in Leela Fernandes, ed., Handbook on Gender in South Asia Forthcoming (London: Routledge, 2014).
LINK: Routledge Handbook of Gender in South Asia (Hardback)

Vrinda Narain, “Critical Multiculturalism” in Beverly Baines, Daphne Barak-Erez and Tsvi Kahana, eds., in Feminist Constitutionalism: Global Perspectives (Cambridge, U.K.: Cambridge University Press, 2012). View chapter as PDF Chapter 20 – “Critical Multiculturalism”, pp. 377-392.

Research reports

Vrinda Narain, “The Potential of Human Dignity: Women in Religious Contexts”, p. 47-52, in Dignity: A Special Focus on Vulnerable Groups, F. Mégret & F. Hoffman eds. (Agenda for Human Rights: a Swiss Initiative, Geneva Academy of International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights, 2009).
LINK Dignity: A Special Focus on Vulnerable Groups - Swiss Initiative to ... [.pdf]

Non-refereed articles

Book Review, Hilal Elver, The Headscarf Controversy, (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2012), Canadian Journal of Women and the Law, forthcoming, 2013.

Book Review, Bipasha Baruah, Women and Property in India (Vancouver: UBC Press, 2010), Canadian Journal of Women and the Law: 2012. Vol. 24 Issue 2, p. 496.
LINK: Women and Property in Urban India (review) pp. 496-501 | DOI: 10.1353/jwl.2012.0018 Download PDF (46 KB)


Interview on CBC The National, February 16, 2012 on the Supreme Court of Canada’s decision on Religious Freedom in S.L. v. Commission scolaire des Chênes, 2012 SCC 7, [2012] 1 S.C.R. 235. cbc.ca/news/canada/quebec-students-must-take-ethics-religion-course-1.1239053

Prof. Narain was quoted in The Week, July 2, 2013: Will India finally stop men from throwing acid on women?