Miho Nonaka, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of English
On Faculty since 2010

Office: Blanchard 312
Phone: (630)752-5787


P.h.D. (English/Creative Writing), University of Houston

M.F.A. (Creative Writing), Columbia University

M.A. (East Asian Studies), Harvard University

B.A. (English), Wellesley College

About Miho Nonaka

Dr. Nonaka’s interests include Creative Nonfiction, Lyric Essay and Memoir Writing, Modern and Contemporary American Poetry, Japanese Literature and Translation, British Romanticism, and Polish Poetry.

Courses Taught

  • ENGW 213 – Creative Writing
  • ENGW 214 – Discursive Writing
  • ENGL 285 – Asian Literature
  • ENGW 332 – Nonfiction Writing
  • ENGW 444 – Special Topics: Writing on Place & Journey
  • ENGW 444 – Special Topics: Memoir

At other universities: Advanced Poetry and Nonfiction Workshops; Introductions to Poetry and Fiction; Myth and Culture; Japanese Fiction; Composition and Language

Membership in Professional Societies

Associated Writing Programs


My literary research includes Japanese Modernism and the Avant-Garde. My most recent article is about a postwar Japanese poet, Tamura Ryƫichi, and his involvement with the literary magazine and group called Arechi (The Wasteland) under the influence of T. S. Eliot and W. H. Auden. I also have a growing interest in the works by Japanese Catholic authors, such as Endo Shusaku and Miura Ayako.

My poetry and nonfiction have to do with in-betweenness. I find myself often exploring the issues and questions of translatability, home, dream and language. When it comes to imagery, I have a soft spot for anything miniature—it started long before I purchased the Nativity of Jesus encased in half a walnut shell.


American Odysseys: Writings by New Americans: the Vilcek Foundation’s Anthology of Prominent Young Immigrant Writers. Forward by Charles Simic. Selected poems. New York: 2011 (forthcoming).

Tamura Ryuichi: On the Life & Work of a 20th Century Master (The Unsung Masters Series). Edited by Takako Lento and Wayne Miller. “In the Beginning Was Fear.” Pleiades Press. Warrensburg, MO: 2011.

Ploughshares. “Roommates.” “The Leafy Sea-Dragon.” Boston, MA: Winter 2009-10.

Cimarron Review. “Autumn Troupe.” Stillwater, OK: 2009-10.

Helen Burns Poetry Anthology: New Voices from the Academy of American Poets’ University & College Prizes, 1999-2008. “What I Wish.” New York: 2009.

American Letters & Commentary. “An-Pan Man.” San Antonio, TX: 2009.

Satellite Convulsions: Poems from Tin House. “Bach's Inventions.” Portland, OR: 2008.

The Spoon River Poetry Review. “Floating.” “Teaching Myself to Touch Silk.” Normal, IL: 2008.

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