Julia Walker (1951-2018)


The English Department honors the memory of Professor Julia Walker, who passed away suddenly on Sunday, February 25, 2018.

Julia joined the faculty in 1985 and taught Renaissance literature, history and gender politics. As a teacher, Julia was known for her intellectual rigor and tireless advocacy for gender equality both on campus and in the broader community. She authored a number of books, including The Elizabeth Icon 1603-2003 (2004), Medusa's Mirrors: Spenser, Shakespeare, Milton, and The Metamorphosis of the Female Self (1998). Julia also served as the editor of Milton and the Idea of Woman (1988) and Dissing Elizabeth: Negative Representations of Gloriana (1998). She received the Milton Society's Hanford Award for the Most Distinguished Milton Essay of 1997.

Julia earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Tennessee. She earned her PhD in literature from Purdue University.

Julia's absence will be deeply felt by her colleagues and students.

But let my due feet never fail
To walk the studious cloister's pale,
And love the high embowèd roof,
With antique pillars' massy proof,
And storied windows richly dight,
Casting a dim religious light.
There let the pealing organ blow,
To the full-voiced choir below,
In service high, and anthems clear,
As may with sweetness, through mine ear,
Dissolve me into ecstasies,
And bring all Heav'n before mine eyes.
And may at last my weary age
Find out the peaceful hermitage . . . .

-- John Milton, Il Penseroso

Julia's obituary can be found at http://rector-hicksfuneralhome.com/tribute/details/779/Julia-Walker/obituary.html#tribute-start

Photo of Julia Walker

Curriculum Vitae


  • Ph.D., Purdue University
  • B.S., M.S., University of Tennesee


  • The Elizabeth Icon 1603 ? 2003. Palgrave/Macmillan UK, 2004.
  • Medusa's Mirrors: Spenser, Shakespeare, Milton, and the Metamorphosis of the Female Self. University of Delaware Press, 1998.
  • editor, Dissing Elizabeth: Negative Representations of Gloriana, Duke University Press, 1998.
  • editor, Milton and the Idea of Woman, Champaign: University of Illinois Press, 1988.
  • ?The Poetics of Anti-text and the Politics of Milton's Allusions." SEL: Studies in English Literature 37 (1997) 151-71. [Milton Society's James Holly Hanford Award for the most distinguished Milton essay of 1997]
  • for other publications, see Walker's website

More About Me

Research Interests

Immediately after my dissertation and early articles on John Donne, I got distracted, seriously distracted, by Milton, then absurdly diverted by Spenser, dutifully waylaid by Christine de Pizan, and accidentally fascinated by what happened to Queen Elizabeth's body after she died in 1603. Now I'm [finally] at work on a Donne book -- only there's this whole digital humanities thing . . . .


  • British Renaissance poetry
  • Milton
  • Spenser
  • Women's Studies