Diane Riggs

Photo of Diane Riggs
Diane Riggs
Master Faculty Specialist
(269) 387-0346
2001 Moore Hall, Mail Stop 5320
Mailing address: 
Department of Comparative Religion
Western Michigan University
1903 W Michigan Ave
Kalamazoo MI 49008-5320 USA
Office hours: 

By appointment via email.

  • Ph.D., Asian Languages and Cultures, University of California, Los Angeles, 2010
  • M.A., Japanese Studies and Buddhist Studies, University of California-Los Angeles
  • B.A., English Literature, University of California-Berkeley
Teaching interests: 
  • Buddhism
  • Buddhist meditation traditions
  • Buddhist texts in literature
  • Approaches to the study of ender in Buddhism
Research interests: 
  • Buddhist material culture

Dr. Diane Riggs is a faculty specialist I in the Department of Comparative Religion at Western Michigan University.

Riggs conducted her dissertation research in Kyoto at Ryūkoku University and the International Research Center for Japanese Studies. She also studied at the Inter-university Center for Japanese Language Education in Yokohama. Riggs' dissertation, "The Cultural and Religious Significance of Japanese Buddhist Vestments," is the first full length study of Japanese Buddhist robes that integrates textual sources with historical and contemporary material culture. Her research interests include the integration of religious practice with material culture and the agency of women in supporting this culture.

Riggs is responsible for coordinating and teaching REL 1000 and REL 2010. She has also taught courses in Indian, Chinese and Japanese religious traditions; Buddhist meditation traditions; and Zen Buddhism. She recently received a 2019 College of Arts and Sciences Dean's Appreciation Award.