Liz Janssen

Liz Janssen


B.A., Liberal Studies, Antioch University Los Angeles
M.A., English, University of Washington

Office: Truly House

My primary teaching and research interests include: reading communities and the politics of literature; immigrant texts and U.S.-specific modes of racialization; and issues of access and representation in higher education.


In my composition courses, I aim to help students appreciate complexity and nuance in texts, arguments, and people, as well as the power of language and rhetoric to create meaning. I prompt students to connect course skills and topics with contexts that matter to them, academic and otherwise. My courses focus on skills of audience awareness, genre analysis, and information literacy at all levels of composition, so that students can adapt to the various reading and writing situations they’ll encounter in the future. I also center reflection as a skill, prompting students to understand their own processes and values as writers and learners. My BWRIT course themes include: education and social justice; community and identity; language and representation; and other topics that allow students specific points of access given their own investments and expertise.

Recent Courses Taught



I am currently finishing my dissertation, titled “Terms and Conditions: Ethnicity, Value, and U.S. Reading Publics”—to be defended in winter 2021. Broadly, my research is focused on 21st century Anglophone literature, global conditions of literary production, and market tastes for “ethnic” literature. Lately, I’ve been studying a trend toward metafiction among immigrant authors of color, in order to understand how texts can influence the terms of their own receptions. 

Selected Publications

“Intertextuality: Joining the Conversation,” Writer/Thinker/Maker: A Guide to Academic Research and Writing at the University of Washington, ed. Stephanie Hankinson, AJ Burgin, Candice Rai, Bedford/St. Martin 2017.

“Uses of Displeasure: Literary Value and Affective Disgust,” The Los Angeles Review of Books, July 2015.