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Tom Douglas

Title: Professor
Phone: (562) 985-5170
Office: F03-312

Education History

Ph.D., University of California, Irvine 2004, Anthropology
M.A., University of California, Irvine 1998, Social Science
B.A., California State University, Long Beach 1994, Liberal Studies


Courses Taught

ANTH 120 Intro to Cultural Anthropology
ANTH 501 Anthropological Theory

Research Focus and Teaching Specialties

Southeast Asian immigration, immigrant enclaves, immigrant poverty, racism, religion, religious syncretism and religious identity, relationships between religion and capitalism, Southeast Asian culture and Southeast Asian history. Cambodian immigrant communities in Seattle, WA and Long Beach, CA



My research has focused on the issues faced by Cambodian communities in Long Beach and Seattle. Much of my research was conducted either at local Cambodian community centers or at local Cambodian Buddhist temples (known as Wats). This research particularly focused on changing religious identities and religious syncretism within these two communities. Many Cambodian immigrants are engaging in both Christian and Buddhist practices. My research has focused on why immigrants may choose to be involved in both religious traditions.


Selected Publications

  • 2005, Changing Religious Practices among Cambodian Immigrants in Long Beach and Seattle. In Immigrant Faiths: Transforming Religious Life in America. Karen Leonard, Alex Stepick, Manuel Vasquez, and Jennifer Holdaway, editors. AltaMira Press.
  • 2005, Ritual and Magic: Two Diverse Approaches to Inner Healing in the Cambodian-American Community by Thomas J. Douglas and Sophan Mam. In Religion and Healing in America. Linda Barnes and Susan Sered, editors. Oxford: Oxford Press.
  • 2003, The Cross and the Lotus: Changing Religious Practices among Cambodian Immigrants in Seattle. In Revealing the Sacred in Asian & Pacific America. Jane Naomi Iwamura & Paul Spickard, Editors. New York: Routledge
  • 2001, Discipline and Punish? Cambodian Refugees Learning Parenting from the Police. Anthropology News (42) 2:43.