Jess Jensen Mitchell

Jess Jensen Mitchell

Ph.D. candidate in Slavic Languages and Literatures


Jess Jensen Mitchell is a 2nd year Ph.D. candidate in Slavic Languages and Literatures. Broadly speaking, her research focuses on marginality in the last decades of the Russian Empire. Key topics of interest include the influence of mass media networks on popular prose, the central and peripheral cityscape, and the relationship between Russian language hegemony and cultural output produced in Polish and Yiddish. The legacies of these tangled histories are explored in her work on the historic imagination in contemporary Polish and Russian texts. She is particularly interested in present-day constructions of the Jewish past. 

Jess earned a Joint Honours degree in Slavic Literatures and History at McGill University. Her thesis in Slavic Literatures analysed genre and historical representation in the Polish film Rewers (2009, Borys Lankosz). Jess has also studied at the University of Warsaw, the Center for Yiddish Culture (in summer 2021), the University of Wisconsin, and Middlebury College, where she is enrolled in the Russian MA programme. Before beginning her graduate studies, Jess interned at a Kraków museum, translated, and taught conversational English. 

Jess presented her paper “‘What Will Happen to Me Tomorrow’: the Reception of Rywka Lipszyc's diary of the Łódź Ghetto in Contemporary Poland'' at the 2021 AATSEEL conference. She has also participated in the Mayrent Institute Graduate Seminar on “The Yiddish Object” (2021) and Middlebury Russian School Symposia (2019, 2020). 

In the 2021-2 academic year, Jess will begin to serve as a teaching fellow.