Wesleyan portrait of Krishna R. Winston

Krishna R. Winston

Marcus L. Taft Professor of German Language and Literature, Emerita

North College, 326

Professor, College of the Environment, Emerita

284 High Street, 305


BA Smith College
MAA Wesleyan University
MPHIL Yale University
PHD Yale University

Krishna R. Winston

Krishna Winston specializes in literary translation and has translated over 35 works of fiction and non-fiction from the German. Her authors include Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Günter Grass, Peter Handke, Christoph Hein, Golo Mann, Rainer Werner Fassbinder, Hans Jonas, and Werner Herzog. Her translations make available to the entire English-speaking world works originally written in German, and she has received three major literary prizes for her translations. She has supervised numerous undergraduate honors theses that involve translation of entire works or collections of essays and short stories and has recently used some of her students' translations in a course on Germany as a multicultural society. Her academic training focused on the literature of the Weimar Republic, writers exiled from Hitler's Germany and Austria, and the literature of post-WWII Germany.

In 2017 she received the Bundesverdienstkreuz am Bande (Order of Merit) from the President of the Federal Republic of Germany for her contributions to the understanding and dissemination of German culture.

After majoring in German at Smith, which included a junior year and a post-B.A.-year in Hamburg, I earned my Ph.D. in German at Yale, writing a dissertation on the Hungarian playwright Ödön von Horváth (1901–1938), who wrote in German, pioneering the modern Volksstück. While still in graduate school, I published my first translation, Gunilla Bergsten's study of Thomas Mann's Doktor Faustus (Univ. of Chicago Press). My entire academic career has taken place at Wesleyan, where in addition to teaching I have had a one-year stint as acting Dean of the College and a four-year term as Dean of the Arts and Humanities. I also spent two years as Director of Service Learning. From 1993 to 2016 I coordinated the Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellowship, and from 1979 to 2015 I served as the Campus Fulbright Program Advisor, stepping in to carry out that function temporarily in 2018-19. After the founding of the College of the Environment, I became a member of its faculty and currently serve on the governing board. Projects for 2019 include translation of two essays and the latest novel by Peter Handke.

After my retirement at the end of the 2018-19 academic year, I will occupy an office in the College of the Environment, 284 High St., Room 305. In the fall of 2019 and from time to time thereafter I will teach my First-Year Seminar, "The Simple Life?"

Academic Affiliations

Office Hours


Office hours are by appointment, in  COE 305.


Fall 2019
GRST 230F - 01
The Simple Life? (FYS)