Comparative American Studies
Department Chair:
Wendy Kozol, Chair

Administrative Assistant:
Linda Pardee

Department Email:

Phone: (440) 775-5290
Fax: (440) 775-8644

King 141
10 N. Professor Street
Oberlin, OH, 44074-1095

Wendy Kozol

Wendy Kozol

Professor/Chair of Comparative American Studies (1992)
Affiliate of GSFS

Contact Information


Rice Hall 112
(440) 775-6679

Personal Office Hours:
or by appointment

Wendy Kozol

Wendy Kozol

Wendy Kozol, Professor

Educational Background

  • Bachelor of Arts, Oberlin College, 1980
  • Master of Arts, Univ California Los Angeles, 1986
  • Doctor of Philosophy, Univ Minnesota Minneapolis, 1990

Wendy Kozol’s new book, Visible Wars and the Ambivalences of Witnessing, was published by the University of Minnesota Press in fall 2014. This study brings a new perspective to enduring concerns about the efficacy of conflict photography and other forms of visual advocacy. In the 21st century, visuality has been a pivotal technology in U.S. militarism as well as in critiques of the nation at war. This book analyzes both mainstream media and alternative visual projects to understand how representations of the U.S. at war navigate in, through, and around national security logics. Visual witnessing, she argues, often remains bound up in national security agendas even as it may stretch beyond those agendas into other terrains of possibility.

For the past two years, Wendy has also been working with a former student, Rebecca Adelman (OC ’01) on a new project titled “The War In Between.” Their first publication appeared this fall: “Banality: Discordant Affects and the Ethics of Spectatorship.” Theory & Event, vol. 17, issue 3 (2014). She also published two other articles this fall: “Witnessing Genocide and the Challenges of Ethical Spectatorship,” Embodied Politics in Visual Autobiography, eds. S. Brophy and J. Hladki (U Toronto P); and “Witnessing Precarity: Photojournalism, Women’s/Human/Rights, and the War in Afghanistan,” in The Violence of the Image: Photography and International Conflict, ed. Liam Kennedy and Caitlin Patrick (I.B. Tauris).