Dr Janine Bradbury is an academic specialising in African American literature and American Studies. She completed her PhD thesis on contemporary African American women’s writing at The University of Sheffield. Janine holds a BA Hons (First Class) degree in American Studies, an MA (Distinction) in American Literature, and is an alumna (study abroad) of The University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill.
She is currently working on her first monograph, African American Women Writers and Passing (Palgrave Macmillan, forthcoming), which explores contemporary re-imaginings of racial passing in the work of Toni Morrison, Alice Walker, and Gloria Naylor (among others).
Janine is very interested in questions of racial and gendered performance and authenticity. While literature is her primary specialism, she explores these issues in a broad range of contexts in additional projects. A book chapter on drag and American pro-wrestling has been published and she is also working on a piece about the singer, actress, and model Grace Jones.
Janine teaches and supervises undergraduate and postgraduate students at York St John University, delivering lectures and seminars on American literature; gender, sexuality and popular culture; academic writing; and critical literary perspectives.
Janine has a professional background in widening participation (in higher education) and equality and diversity work; her thoughts on the topic featured in the Guardian. She is also a member of The Runnymede Trust’s Emerging Scholars Forum, which brings together 30 of the UK’s brightest and most promising early-career academics working on race. She regularly delivers literature and writing workshops for young people in the Yorkshire region.
She has published work on the Harlem Renaissance writer Zora Neale Hurston and when Hurston’s seminal novel Their Eyes Were Watching God featured as BBC Radio 4’s ‘Book at Bedtime’, Janine discussed the novel with Jenni Murray on Woman’s Hour.
Before joining York St John University as a lecturer, Janine was a teaching associate and project officer at The University of Sheffield, and worked for the Workers’ Educational Association, providing courses on American literature for adult learners.