Jenny Heijun Wills

Cultural Studies

Jenny Heijun Wills Title: Associate Professor
Office: 2A33
Building: Ashdown
Phone: 204.789.1474

Jenny Heijun Wills writes about race and ethnicity both as a scholar of literary and cultural studies and as a creative writer. Her memoir, Older Sister. Not Necessarily Related is forthcoming in hardcover and audiobook in Fall 2019 from McClelland & Stewart, Penguin Randomhouse Canada. She is currently writing a confessional novel entitled Sip, inspired by the life of the one surviving Korean adopted child of notorious cult-leader and mass murderer, Jim Jones. She is co-president of the Alliance for the Study of Adoption and Culture and serves as an editorial board member for the literary studies journal, ARIEL.

Teaching Areas:

Asian/American literatures and cultures; Ethnic Studies; popular culture, writing, critical adoption studies


(W) ENGL-3116-001 Topics in Creative Writing (Creative Non-Fiction)

(W) ENGL-3724-001 Topics in Race and Ethnicity: Anger

(W) ENGL-4903-001 Critical Race Studies: Race, Fashion, Beauty



Older Sister. Not Necessarily Related. McClelland & Stewart, Penguin Random House, 2019

Adoption and Discourses of Multiculturalism: Europe, the Americas, and the Pacific. Co-edited with Tobias Hubinette and Indigo Willing. University of Michigan Press, 2020 (forthcoming).

Teaching Asian/North American Texts. Co-edited with Jennifer Ho. The Modern Languages Association (forthcoming).

“How to Kin the Transnational Adoptee in Quebecois Nationalist Family Romance” co-authored with Bruno Cornellier. Adoption and Discourses of Multiculturalism: Europe, the Americas, and the Pacific, edited by Jenny Heijun Wills, Tobias Hubinette and Indigo Willing, University of Michigan Press, 2020 (forthcoming).


“Disciplinary Peripheries for Female Graduate Students of Colour in Canada: A Conversation.” Co-authored with Delice Mugabo. Degrees of Difference: Reflections of Women of Colour on Graduate School, edited by Denise Delgado and Kimberly McKee, University of Illinois Press (forthcoming).

“Teaching Asian/North American Romance Narratives.” Approaches to Teaching Asian/North American Texts, edited by Jenny Heijun Wills and Jennifer Ho, Modern Languages Association (forthcoming).

“Transnational Adoption, Gender, and Sexuality.” Advanced Undergraduate Theory Reader in Women’s/Gender/Feminist/ LGBTQ+/Sexuality Studies, edited by Barbara Shaw and Ayu Saraswati, Oxford University Press, 2019.

“Issues in Fairy-Tale Cultures and Media: Orientalism.” Routledge Companion to Fairy-Tale Cultures and Media, edited by Pauline Greenhill, Jill Terry Rudy and Naomi Hamer, Routledge, 2018.

“Asian North American Adoption Narratives.” The Oxford Encyclopedia of Asian American Literature and Culture, edited by Cathy Schlund-Vials, et al., Oxford University Press, 2018.

“Against Asianness: On Being Cool, Feminist, and American in Asian/American Chick Lit.” Theorizing Ethnicity in the Chick Lit Genre, edited by Erin Hurt, Routledge, 2018.

“Asian Adoption in Crim Novels by Don Lee and Bharati Mukherjee: Country of Origin and Leave it to Me.” Adoption and Culture, 2017.

“Paradoxical Essentialism.” Canadian Review of American Studies, 2016.

“Competing Nationalisms in Ru and La Trilogie Coreene: Francophone Asian Quebecois Literatures.” Canadian Literature, 2015.

“Fictional and Fragmented Truths in Korean Adoptee Writing.” Asian American Literature: Discourses and Pedagogies, 2015.

“The Gift of the Good Life: ‘Anchor Babies’ and Asian Adoptees.” The Good Life and the Great Good in a Global Context, edited by Laura Savu, Cambridge Scholars, 2015.

“Transnational and Transracial Adoption: Multiculturalism and Selective Colour Blindness.” American Multicultural Studies: Diversity of Race, Ethnicity, Gender, and Sexuality, edited by Sherrow Pindar, Sage, 2013.

“Narrating Multiculturalism in Asian Adoption Fiction.” Mothering and Adoption, edited by Frances Latchford, Demeter, 2013.

“Claiming America by Claiming Others: Asian American Adoptive Parenthood in A Gesture Life and Digging to America.Americana, 2011.

“Picture of Motion: Modernism, Cinema, and the Ch(i)asm(us) of Diasporic Identity in Chuang Hua’s Crossings.” World Literature: An Anthology, edited by Nilanshu Agarwal, Book Enclave, 2010.