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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 She was also a free-lance writer for Canada Extra, and most recently for where she wrote passionately about contemporary issues considering issues of race, gender, class, sexuality, age, and nation. Dr. Flynn was recently a Dean’s Fellowfor 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
Associate Professor, African American Studies
Associate Professor, Women & Gender in Global Perspectives
Associate Professor, Center for African Studies

Recent Publications

Flynn, K. (2022). In Search of What Better Life? Rethinking Caribbean Migration to Canada. Histoire Sociale, 55(114), 371-398.

Flynn, K., Massaquoi, N., & Ray, L. (2021). Care(ful) Disruption: Privileging Indigenous and Black Women's Standpoints on Care and Healing. Gender and History, 33(3), 594-607.

Flynn, K. C., Reverby, S. M., Smith, K. M., & Tobbell, D. (2021). “The thing behind the thing”: White supremacy and interdisciplinary faculty in schools of nursing. Nursing Outlook, 69(4), 502-504.

Adeniyi-Ogunyankin, G., Bailey, M., Flynn, K., Judd, B., Weekley, A. K., Musial, J., & White, M. A. (2020). Black Feminist Thought and the Gender, Women's, and Feminist Studies PhD: A Roundtable Discussion. Feminist Formations, 32(2), 1-28.

Brown, N. M., Mendenhall, R., Black, M., Moer, M. V., Flynn, K., McKee, M., Zerai, A., Lourentzou, I., & Zhai, C. X. (2019). In Search of Zora/When Metadata Isn’t Enough: Rescuing the Experiences of Black Women Through Statistical Modeling. Journal of Library Metadata, 19(3-4), 141-162.

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