Mary McKinley

Douglas Huntly Gordon Distinguished Professor of French, Emerita.


  • Seton Hill College,BA
  • University of Wisconsin, MA
  • Rutgers University, PhD

Research Interests

Sixteenth-century French and continental literature; Montaigne, Marguerite de Navarre, Mediterranean and New World travel narrative, history of the book and print culture.

Representative Courses


  • Ovidian Imitations in Renaissance Poetry
  • Montaigne seminar
  • The Heptaméron and the Tradition of Framed Narrative
  • Lyon Capitale de la Renaissance
  • Rabelais seminar


  • New World Travel Narrative: Verazzano, Cartier, Rabelais, Léry, Montaigne
  • Femmes Ecrivains de la Renaissance
  • Masterpieces of the Middle Ages and Renaissance
  • The Reading and Writing of Texts: Analytical Writing         

Recent Articles:

“On Women,” in The Oxford Handbook of Montaigne, ed. Philippe Desan, OUP, 2016.

“An Ottoman ‘Fixer’ in Marguerite de Navarre’s Heptaméron,” Esprit créateur, special number on the ‘Turk’ in early modern France, 53, 4, winter 2013, pp. 9-20.

“La palinodie de Montaigne,” Bulletin de la Société Internationale des amis de Montaigne, n˚ 55, 1, 2012, 211-220.

“Teaching Marie Dentière’s Epistle with the Heptameron,” in Teaching Women Writers of the Renaissance and Reformation, ed. Colette Winn, New York, MLA Publications, 2011, 273-84.

“From Cave to Choir: the Journey of the Sibyls,” Pre-Histories and Afterlives: Studies towards a New Cultural History, Symposium in Honor of Terence Cave, ed. Richard Scholar and Anna Holland, Oxford, Legenda, 2009, 45-59.

“Iconoclasm in Lyon (1562): Three Contemporary Chroniclers,” in Ritratti: La dimensione individuale nella storia (secoli xv-xx), festschrift for Anne Jacobson Schutte, ed. Silvana Sydel Menchi & Robert Pierce, Edizioni di storia e letteratura, 2008, 225-247.

available on LIBRA (online Archive of University of Virginia Scholarship) :  
Agony, Ecstasy, and the Mulekeeper’s Wife: a Reading of Heptaméron 2,” in A French Forum: Mélanges de littérature française offerts à Raymond C. Et Virginia A. La Charité, ed. Gérard Defaux and Jerry Nash, Paris, Klincksieck, 2000, 129-142.