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Komal Dhillon

Komal Dhillon, Instructor | Virginia Tech

Komal Dhillon portrait
Komal Dhillon, Instructor

Department of Sociology
643 McBryde Hall
225 Stanger Street
Blacksburg, VA 24061
540-797-4752 |

Komal K. Dhillon is an interdisciplinary scholar with a Ph.D. from Virginia Tech’s Alliance for Social, Political, Ethical, Cultural, and Social Thought and a Master of Business Administration from Averett University. Dhillon is an instructor of Sociology, with affiliations in Peace Studies and Violence Prevention, Africana Studies, and Women’s and Gender Studies and teaches courses relating to Race, Class, Gender, and Sexualities; Global Society, Violence and Peace; and Introduction to African American Studies.  Dhillon’s research primarily focuses on pigmentocracy and colorism in India and the United States, with a focus on critical race, postcolonial studies, African American studies, and feminist theory.  Published works include: Marketing Marriage and Colorism in India; Key Concepts in Advertising: Colorism; European-Americans Favoring People of Color: White Colorism and Social Inequality; and Can the Global Transmit the Local for Diaspora?.

  • Critical Race Studies
  • African American Studies
  • Colorism
  • Post/Colonial Studies
  • Whiteness Studies
  • South Asian Cultures, Religions, and Caste
  • Ph.D., Cultural and Social Thought | Alliance for Social, Political, Ethical & Cultural Thought, Virginia Tech, 2015 | Certificates:  Women’s and Gender Studies, Future Professoriate, 2015
  • MBA, Averett University, 2007
  • B.A., Political Science, Minor of Philosophy, Virginia Tech, 2002 
  • Ujima Living-Learning Community Advisory Board Member
  • Race in the Marketplace Network Member
  • Southern Sociological Society Member

Journal Articles

  • 2022:  “Key Concepts in Advertising: Colorism.” Advertising & Society Quarterly Volume 23, Issue 1.
  • 2018:  “Euro-Americans Favoring People of Color: Covert Racism and Economies of White Colorism.” American Behavioral Scientist. Volume 62, Issue 14. pp 2087-2100.

Book Chapters

2019:  “Marketing Marriage and Colorism in India.”  Chapter for Race in the Marketplace—Crossing Critical Boundaries. Edited by G. D. Johnson, S. A. Grier, K. Thomas, A. K. Harrison. Palgrave MacMillan. May. *Distinguished Winner of 2022 AMA-EBSCO-RRRB Annual Award for Responsible Research in Marketing.

Other Creative Works: Book Review

2013:  “Can the Global Transmit the Local for Diaspora” – a review of Arjun Appadurai’s Modernity at Large:  Cultural Dimensions of Globalization; SPECTRA: the ASPECT Journal, Vol. 2, No. 2, November.

2021:  “Multiculturalism” Ujima Learning-Living Community: Melanin Monday Presentation. Virginia Tech.

2016:  “The Whitening of Bollywood: Skin Color and Aesthetics in India's Popular Culture.” California University of Pennsylvania. 

2012:  “Western Imperialism, Japan, and Pigmentocracy.” Radford University.

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