Professor Liz Herbert McAvoy

Professor Liz Herbert McAvoy
Personal Chair
English Literature & Creative Writing
Telephone: (01792) 602462

Liz Herbert McAvoy is a specialist in medieval women’s literature and is particularly interested in how representations of gender are played out within medieval texts by, for or about women. She has recently completed a book on intersections of gender and space within texts written by, for and about medieval anchorites and her options at levels 2, 3 and at MA level all reflect this and associated interests.

Liz has published widely in the area of gender and medieval women’s literature and is the author of Authority and the Female Body in the Writings of Julian of Norwich and Margery Kempe (Cambridge: D.S. Brewer, 2004). She has also produced an abridged translation of The Book of Margery Kempe (Cambridge: D.S. Brewer, 2003) and has co-edited two volumes of essays on gender in medieval literature: Consuming Narratives: Gender and Monstrous Appetite in the Middle Ages and the Renaissance (Cardiff: University of Wales Press, 2002) and Anchorites Wombs and Tombs Intersections of Gender and Enclosure in the Middle Ages (Cardiff: University of Wales Press, 2005). She has also edited several other volumes of essays, including Rhetoric of the Anchorhold: Space, Place and Body within the Discourses of Enclosure (Cardiff: University of Wales Press, 2008); A Companion to Julian of Norwich (Cambridge: D. S. Brewer, 2008); and Anchoritic Traditions of Medieval Europe (Woodbridge: The Boydell Press, 2010). She has recently published two further books: a monograph on the cultural meanings attached to the anchoritic life: Medieval Anchoritisms: Gender, Space and the Solitary Life (Cambridge: D. S. Brewer, 2011 ); and, edited with Diane Watt, The History of British Women's Writing. Vol. 1 700-1500 (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2012); In addition to her publications, she continues to be active in conference and conference-session organisation.

Publications

  1. & Women’s Literary Culture and the Late Medieval English Canon: Introduction. The Chaucer Review 51(1)
  2. (2014). Liz Herbert McAvoy, ‘Carpenter, Christina (fl. 1329–1332)’. (Oxford Dictionary of National Biography). Oxford: Oxford University Press.
  3. Co-editor of essay collection Reconsidering Gender, Time, and Memory in Medieval Culture, comprising: Introduction: ‘In Principio: The Queer Matrix of Gender, Time and Memory in the Middle Ages’, and chapter 6: ‘Gendered Strategies of Time and Memory in the Writing of Julian of Norwich and the Recluse of Winchester’.
  4. (in press). Co-editor Women’s Literary Culture and the Late Medieval English Canon with Diane Watt, with co-authored Introduction to special issue of The Chaucer Review (‘Medieval Women’s Literary Culture and the Canon’) and essay solely by Liz Herbert McAvoy, ‘”O der lady, be my help”: Women’s Visionary Writing and the Devotional Literary Canon’.
  5. ‘Bathing in Blood: The Medicinal Cures of Anchoritic Devotion’, for Medicine, Religion and Gender in Medieval Culture, eds. Naoe Kukita Yoshikawa. In Medicine, Religion and Gender in Medieval Culture.

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Teaching

  • EN-114 Voices of Poetry

    'Voices of Poetry' is an engaging and exciting module which aims to introduce students to poetry and the various voices it articulates. Taught by well-known poets as well as scholars of poetry, this course will introduce students to a wide range of poetic forms and literary periods, ranging from the medieval lyric to postmodern poetry, from Shakespeare to Sylvia Plath. Particular attention will be paid to the interrelationship between meaning and form, and how rhetorical figures, metre, rhythm, tone, register and the speaker's voice create meaning. 'Voices of Poetry' will also foster an appreciation of how poetic forms are re-written in the socio-historical context in which they were produced.

Supervision

  • Untitled (current)

    Student name:
    MA
    Other supervisor: Dr Roberta Magnani
  • Sir Gawain, St Winefride and the Virgin Mary: cult and chivalry in the late Middle Ages. (current)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Prof Deborah Youngs
  • Christa, Christus: Gendering Christ's wounds and Blood in Late-Medieval Europe. (current)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Dr Roberta Magnani
  • Rhiannon of the Mabinogi and her People: a critical study (current)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Prof Christine James
  • Floral Utopias and Otherworlds: Representations of the Enclosed Garden in Chaucer and his Contemporaries (current)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Dr Roberta Magnani