Rachel Ellis is an Assistant Professor of Criminology and Criminal Justice at the University of Maryland. Her research focuses on women's experiences of punishment in the U.S. Using qualitative methods – especially ethnography and interviews – Dr. Ellis investigates incarceration and inequality related to race/class/gender, sexuality, and religion. Her book, In This Place Called Prison: Women's Religious Life in the Shadow of Punishment, examines the contours of freedom and constraint offered by religion within an institution designed to punish (University of California Press, 2023). Her current projects include an interview study of women's reentry and a Russell Sage-funded project about women on probation.

Areas of Interest

  • Corrections
  • Gender and Punishment
  • Qualitative Methods
CV: Ellis CV43.91 KB


  • Degree Type
    Degree Details
    University of Pennsylvania
  • Degree Type
    Degree Details
    University of Pennsylvania
  • Degree Type
    Degree Details
    Georgetown University
Course Name Course Title Semester Syllabus
CCJS418C Seminar in Criminology and Criminal Justice; Gender and Crime Fall 2023 Syllabus

Current Students

Former Students

Related Students (Listed by Student on Student's Profile)

  • Carly Brownstein
  • Frank Donohue
  • Alexandra (Xandie) Wood
2165B LeFrak Hall
Department of Criminology and Criminal Justice
ellisr [at] umd.edu