Professor Mary Flannery is a scholar of medieval English literature and culture. Her research concentrates on the connections between literature, reputation, and emotion. Her first book, John Lydgate and the Poetics of Fame (Boydell & Brewer, 2012), identified the subject of fame as key to understanding the poetics of fifteenth-century England’s most important author. Her second book, Practising Shame: Female Honour in Later Medieval England (Manchester University Press, 2019), examined how medieval texts encouraged women to cultivate vigilance against shame in order to secure their good reputation. A Q&A regarding Practising shame may be found here. Research for the study was supported by an Early Career Research Fellowship at the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for the History of Emotion (held between August and October 2013) and a Subvention Tremplin from the University of Lausanne. In 2018 and 2019 she was a Marie Skłodowska-Curie Research Fellow at the University of Oxford, where she investigated the transmission and reception of obscenity in premodern copies of The Canterbury Tales.
Professor Flannery was educated at Claremont McKenna College and at the University of Cambridge. While a graduate student at Cambridge, she co-founded the Medieval Reading Group (MRG) and designed, developed, and co-founded Marginalia, the MRG’s online journal, both of which were supported by funds from a UK Arts and Humanities Research Council Collaborative Research Training Grant. She has held posts at the University of Oxford, University of Lausanne, Queen Mary, University of London, and at the J. Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles, where she co-curated a 2009 exhibition entitled ‘Temptation and Salvation: The Psalms of King David’.