Jennifer Marston William received a Ph.D. in German Literature from Ohio State University in 2002 and came to Purdue that same year. Her research and teaching interests lie primarily in twentieth and twenty-first century German literature and film, as well as cognitive studies. She has been particularly active in the interdisciplinary programs of Jewish Studies and Film and Video Studies at Purdue, and she is a co-founder and steering committee member of the Center for Cognitive-Literary Studies, which was established in 2008. She received a Volkswagen Foundation Grant for travel to the German literary archives (DLA) in Marbach, Germany in 2007, and in 2009 she spent a semester in Berlin with a Faculty Research Visit Grant from the DAAD (German Academic Exchange Service).
Professor William has published a monograph, Killing Time: Waiting Hierarchies in the Twentieth-Century German Novel (Bucknell University Press, 2010), and a co-edited volume, Theory of Mind and Literature (Purdue University Press, 2011). Her current book project examines contemporary German historical films in the context of cognitive studies. Professor William’s scholarly articles have appeared in the leading journals of her field, including German Quarterly, German Studies Review, The Germanic Review, The Brecht Yearbook, and The Journal of the Kafka Society of America. Since 2008, she has served as editor for contributions on German literature to The Literary Encyclopedia.
Professor William was Chair of German at Purdue from 2007-2011, and Chair of German and Russian from 2011-2013. Currently she is serving as Provost Fellow and is in her second year as the Assistant Head for the School of Languages and Cultures.