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Ruth Feingold

Dean of the College of Arts & Sciences; Professor of English

Headshot of Ruth Feingold

Contact Information

Salem Campus

Smullin 108
900 State Street
Salem  Oregon  97301


AM, PhD, University of Chicago

BA, Oberlin College


Ruth Feingold was named dean of the College of Arts & Sciences in April 2016. A professor of English, with appointments in women’s and gender studies and Asian studies, Feingold has taught a broad range of classes in literature and culture of the 19th-21st centuries. Her research centers on national identity, place and space in postcolonial nations — with a primary focus on New Zealand and Australia, but periodic forays into southern Africa, India and contemporary multi-ethnic Britain. Previously at St. Mary’s College of Maryland, Feingold served in multiple administrative roles ranging from department chair to dean, and with oversight of areas as varied as general education, advising and academic services, and international education. She served as associate dean of faculty and academic affairs before coming to Willamette.

Feingold grew up in the Midwest, and has a long history with liberal arts institutions, having attended Oberlin College and the University of Chicago. She says she was drawn to Willamette by the clear devotion of its faculty and students to fully engaged learning, and the university’s unapologetic embrace of the liberal arts as central to its mission.


My major research centers on national identity, place, and space in postcolonial nations. I've published essays and book chapters on the New Zealand authors Margaret Mahy and Elizabeth Knox, on 20th-century Australasian literary nationalism, on the Coronation and royal tours of Elizabeth II, and on British novelist A.S. Byatt. I'm currently working on two projects: an ongoing study of colonial and post-colonial girlhood and coming of age, and a book about the Parker-Hulme case, a 1954 murder in New Zealand.


IDS101: The Great American Road Trip

ENGL319: Postcolonial Literature


“Mapping the Interior: Place, Self, and Nation in The Dreamhunter Duet.” Space and Place in Children’s Literature, Eds. Maria Cecire, Hannah Field, and Malini Roy. Farnham, Surrey: Ashgate Press, 2015.

“Every Little Girl Can Grow Up to be Queen: The Coronation and The Virgin in the Garden.” Literature and History, Vol. 22, No. 2, Autumn 2013.

“Marketing the Modern Empire: Elizabeth’s Royal Progress.” Antipodes: A Global Journal of Australian and New Zealand Literature, Vol. 23, No. 2, December 2009: pp. 121–129.

“From Empire to Nation: The Shifting Sands of Australian National Identity.” Companion to Twentieth-Century Australian Literature, Eds. Nicholas Birns and Rebecca McNeer. Rochester, NY: Boydell and Brewer/University of Rochester Press, 2007: pp. 61–71.

“Gardening in Eden: Mahy’s Postcolonial Ghosts and the New Zealand Landscape.” Marvellous Codes: Critical Essays on the Fiction of Margaret Mahy, Eds. Sarah Winters and Elizabeth Hale. Wellington, NZ: Victoria University Press, 2005: pp. 210–233.