Professor of Comparative Literature
Undergraduate Program Director
Professor Janet A. Walker teaches courses on world literature, the novel in its European and non-Western manifestations, postcolonial literatures and theories, and modern Japanese literature. She has served as undergraduate director and graduate director of the Comparative Literature Program, and she was instrumental, in 1978, in initiating the teaching of Japanese within the then Department of Chinese, Comparative Literature, and Slavic Languages and Literatures, acting as de facto Japanese program director from 1978-1983. She has been a visiting professor at Princeton University and Columbia University, and she was invited to teach briefly under a West Bengal government grant for the Department of Comparative Literature at Jadavpur University in Kolkata.
She is the author of The Japanese Novel of the Meiji Period and the Ideal of Individualism (Princeton University Press, 1979) and co-editor of The Woman’s Hand: Gender and Theory in Japanese Women’s Writing (Stanford University Press, 1996). In addition, she has published essays on, among other topics, modern Japanese fiction writers, the classical Japanese woman writer Izumi Shikibu, van Gogh and his image of Japan, and autobiography in Western and Japanese literature.