Jennifer Wacek, Ph.D.
Senior Lecturer, CLI
PhD, Comparative Literature, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2015; MA, Comparative Literature, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2007; BA, English, College of St. Benedict, 2003
Teaching at UMR
My goal in teaching literature is to help students become active learners and critical thinkers through the analysis of literary texts. Literature can facilitate deep thinking and discussion on a wide range of important issues, and it allows students to come into contact with people, places, and things that are far from their daily lives. I believe that these encounters can push students to be not only better people or better scientists but better citizens of the world in which we live.
My disciplinary research focuses on issues of gender and community in literary texts in English, Arabic, French, and Spanish. In the context of teaching literature, I am interested in the ways that reading texts from diverse times and places can engage students in thoughtful discussions of such contemporary issues as race, gender, and difference. In terms of teaching and learning research, I am interested in how reflective writing can help our students become more thoughtful and engaged future healthcare professionals.