Sheena CUSheena Malhotra, Ph.D.

No one is free when others are oppressed

Gender and Women's Studies Department
California State University, Northridge

18411 Nordhoff Street

Northridge, CA 91330-8251


Off: 818-677-7217

cover image for silences book

Sheena CU against blue backgroundSheena Malhotra is Professor of Gender & Women’s Studies. She serves as the Director of the MA in Humanities Program and the Queer Studies Program at California State University, Northridge.She was the Associate Dean of the College of Humanities for two years before returning to the faculty.

Dr. Malhotra has a BA from DePauw University (1991), an MA from Pepperdine University (1993) and a Ph.D. from the University of New Mexico (1999) in the field of Communication Studies with an emphasis on gender, media and intercultural communication. 

Research: Her dissertation focused on the cultural implications of satellite television in India, with a particular attention to gender issues. Her research and articles focus on the intersections of gender, media, technology and global culture, with a postcolonial analysis of media in India and the diaspora. Her research interests range from Hindi films and call centers in India to racialized implications of silences and bridgework.

cover for 'answer the call'

Books: Her book on call centers (with co-authors Drs. Aimee Carrillo Rowe andKimberlee Perez) maps torn subjectivities and new times-space relations in call centers in India. It is entitled, Answer the Call: Virtual Migration in Indian Call Centers (2013, University of Minnesota Press)Dr. Malhotra is also co-editor of an anthology on feminism and silence with Dr. Carrillo Rowe, Silence, Feminism, Power: Reflections at the Edges of Sound (2013) (Palgrave MacMillan).

Film/TV Experience: Dr. Malhotra grew up in India where she has experience in the Indian film and television industries. Prior to earning her Ph.D. degree, she worked as an Executive Producer and Commissioning Editor of Programs for BiTV (Business India Television), one of the alternative, independent, private television networks in India. She has also worked in the Indian film industry as an Assistant Director to Shekhar Kapur (director of "Bandit Queen" and "Elizabeth").

Additionally, she has directed, assisted on and associate produced documentary films:

  • CSUN Struggles for Peace & Justice. 2004 about activism at CSUN. Director and Producer
  • The Shape of Water.2006. Directed by Kum-Kum Bhavnani and narrated by Susan Sarandon, The Shape of Water offers a close look at the far reaching and vibrant alternatives crafted by women in response to environmental degradation, archaic traditions, lack of economic independence and war. Associate Producer
  • Bollywood Crossings. 2008. Directed by Tavishi Alagh. Special Consultant.

Teaching: Dr. Malhotra began teaching in the Gender & Women's Studies Department at CSUN in Fall, 2000. She teaches courses on women and popular culture, such as Sex, Lies and Media, as well as general GWS classes. Dr. Malhotra often teaches complete or hybrid (partially online) courses for the department.

Sheena side faceService: Dr. Malhotra currently serves as the Director of the Queer Studies Program (2019 to present) as well as the Academic Director of the MA in Humanities Program (2012 to present). Leadership rolese she has held include: the Associate Dean of the college (2017-2019), Chair of the Gender and Women's Studies Department from 2009-2013. She was the first coordinator of the Queer Studies Program from 2008-2012 at CSU, Northridge. She directed the Women's Research and Resource Center in 2003-04 and served as the advisor to two student groups: Women's Studies Student Association and Violent Acts Grounded (2000-2006).At the national level, she has served as Program Planner and Chair for the Feminist and Women's Studies Division of the National Communication Association in 2008 and 2009.

Academic Publications by Sheena Malhotra

Links to websites: