Karen Flynn

Associate Professor


Karen Flynn is an Associate professor in the Department of Gender and Women’s Studies and the Department of African-American Studies Program at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. She received her Ph.D. in Women's Studies from York University, Toronto, Ontario, in 2003. Her research interests include migration and travel, Black Canada, health, popular culture, feminist, Diasporic and post-colonial studies. Dr. Flynn’s book: Moving Beyond Borders: Black Canadian and Caribbean women in the African Canadian Diaspora published by University of Toronto won the Lavinia L. Dock Award from the American Association of the History of Nursing. She is currently working on a second book project that maps the travel itineraries of young Black EFL teachers across borders.

In addition to her academic work, Dr. Flynn has published numerous editorials in Share, Canada's largest ethnic newspaper, which serves the Black & Caribbean communities in the Greater Metropolitan Toronto area. area. Dr. Flynn has had oped articles in Now Magazine, the Toronto Star, and Rabble.ca. She was also a free-lance writer for Canada Extra, and most recently for Swaymag.ca where she wrote passionately about contemporary issues considering issues of race, gender, class, sexuality, age, and nation. Dr. Flynn was recently a Dean’s Fellow for the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences (LAS), a program geared towards strengthening and expanding the cadre of leaders in the College. In 2015, Dr. Flynn was selected as the Conrad Humanities Fellow for LAS for excellence in scholarship.


Research Interests

Migration and travel, Black Canada, health, popular culture, feminist, Diasporic and post-colonial studies.

Additional Campus Affiliations

Associate Professor, Gender and Women's Studies

Recent Publications

Brown, N. M., Mendenhall, R., Black, M., Vanmoer, M. W., Flynn, K., McKee, M., ... Zhai, C. (2019). In Search of Zora/When Metadata Isn’t Enough: Rescuing the Experiences of Black Women Through Statistical Modeling. Journal of Library Metadata. https://doi.org/10.1080/19386389.2019.1652967

Flynn, K., & Fladejebi, F. (2019). Writing black canadian women's history: Where we have been and where we are going. In Reading Canadian Women's and Gender History (pp. 63-89). University of Toronto press.

Flynn, K. (2018). "Hotel Refuses Negro Nurse": Gloria Clarke Baylis and the Queen Elizabeth Hotel. Canadian bulletin of medical history = Bulletin canadien d'histoire de la medecine, 35(2), 278-308. https://doi.org/10.3138/cbmh.256-042018

Flynn, K. (2017). Reconfiguring Black Internationalism: English as Foreign Language Teachers of African Descent in South Korea. Journal of African Diaspora Archaeology and Heritage, 6(3), 262-283. https://doi.org/10.1080/21619441.2017.1385960

Brown, N. M., Mendenhall, R., Black, M. L., Moer, M. V., Zerai, A., & Flynn, K. (2016). Mechanized Margin to Digitized Center: Black Feminism's Contributions to Combatting Erasure within the Digital Humanities. International Journal of Humanities & Arts Computing: A Journal of Digital Humanities, 10(1), 110-125. https://doi.org/10.3366/ijhac.2016.0163

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