Janet Winston

Janet Winston
(707) 826-3913
Founders Hall 213

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I was born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area, went to college in Los Angeles and East Sussex, UK, and have worked in Idaho, Iowa, Oregon, and Virginia. Before launching a career in university teaching, I worked a variety of jobs: from baton twirling instructor to floral arranger; from Applied Behavior Analysis language tutor to program director for the Idaho Special Olympics. In between my BA in psychology and my PhD in English, I took courses at CSU Hayward (now East Bay).

My research on Queen Victoria and Virginia Woolf--icons of white imperialist femininity and white feminism, respectively--focuses on how racial-colonial logics are memorialized and destabilized in visual culture and narrative. Inspired in part by Atalia Omer’s book
Days of Awe: Reimagining Jewishness in Solidarity with Palestinians (University of Chicago Press, 2019), I am currently writing an autoethnographic essay about white Jewish American history, activism, and identity.

As part of my work as a professor, I am involved in queer, antiracist, and Palestinian solidarity education and organizing. When I lived in Virginia, I was part of a core group of queer faculty who led a Ford Foundation grant-funded conference to establish “Network Virginia,” a coalition of LGBTQ faculty and students advocating for change across Virginia’s college campuses. Currently, I am active in the Eureka NAACP’s Legal Redress Committee, volunteer with the Center for Jewish Nonviolence, and serve as a Founding Co-Chair and Interim Co-President of the Palestine, Arab, and Muslim Caucus of the California Faculty Association’s Council for Racial & Social Justice.

Specialty Areas

Cultural Studies; Postcolonial Studies; Gender/Sexuality Studies; British Modernism; Twentieth-Century Visual Culture; Critical Theories of Race and Whiteness


Ph.D., English, University of Iowa, B.A. Psychology, UCLA

Courses Taught

GNED 109R Off the Beaten Path: Humboldt through Literature & Landscape
ENGL 220 Representation Matters: Literature and Identity
ENGL 231 British Literature Survey II
ENGL 305 Postcolonial Literature/Decolonizing Perspectives
ENGL/WS 308B Gender and Literature
ENGL 320 Practical Criticism
ENGL 350 Art, War, and Politics in Modernist Literature
ENGL 350 Sexology and Literary Scandal
ENGL 410 & WS 370 Queer Women’s Memoir
ENGL 410 Queer Theories
ENGL 471 Palestinian Literature
ENGL 481 & 681 Internship in Teaching of Literature
ENGL 490 Senior Project Seminar
ENGL 546 21st-Century Virginia Woolf
ENGL 546 Englishness and Otherness in Modernist Britain
ENGL 605 Introduction to Cultural Studies

Current Graduate Students

Name M.A. Project
Adam Mellott
Cole Shepard


“Kinetic Tropes, Comedic Turns: Dancing To the Lighthouse.” Contradictory Woolf: Selected Papers from the Twenty-First Annual International Conference on Virginia Woolf. Ed. Derek Ryan and Stella Bolaki. Clemson University Digital Press, 2012. 122-28

Woolf's To the Lighthouse. Reader’s Guides Series on Key Texts in Literature and Philosophy. London: Continuum Books, 2009 “Difficult Silences.” Academe: Bulletin of the American Association of University Professors (July-August 2006): 64-67

"Reading Influences: Homoeroticism and Mentoring in Katherine Mansfield’s ‘Carnation’ and Virginia Woolf’s ‘Moments of Being: Slater’s Pins Have No Points.’” Virginia Woolf: Lesbian Readings. Ed. Eileen Barrett and Patricia Cramer. The Cutting Edge: Lesbian Life and Literature Series, NYU Press, 1997. 57-77.

Reprinted in Short Story Criticism: Criticism of the Works of Short Fiction Writers, Vol. 81. Ed. Thomas J. Schoenberg and Lawrence J. Trudeau. New York: Thomson Gale Publishers, 2005. 45-54.

“Queen Victoria in the Funnyhouse: Adrienne Kennedy and the Rituals of Colonial Possession.” Remaking Queen Victoria. Ed. Margaret Homans and Adrienne Munich. Cambridge Studies in Nineteenth-Century Literature and Culture Series, Cambridge University Press, 1997. 235-257

“‘Something Out of Harmony’: To the Lighthouse and the Subject(s) of Empire.” Woolf Studies Annual 2 (1996): 39-70. Reprinted in part in Virginia Woolf: To the Lighthouse, The Waves. Ed. Jane Goldman. Columbia Critical Guides Series, Columbia University Press, 1999. 159-67.