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Mary Dockray-Miller (born 1965) is an American scholar of Anglo-Saxon England, best known for her work on gender in the Anglo-Saxon period. She has published on female saints, on Beowulf, and on religious women. She teaches at Lesley University, where she is professor of English.
Dockray-Miller is the author of Motherhood and Mothering in Anglo-Saxon England (St. Martin's Press, 2000), which utilized postmodern gender theory (the work of Judith Butler, Luce Irigaray, and others) to reinvestigate historical elements, such as double houses and Anglo-Saxon religious women, and literature, including Beowulf. At the time, it was "the first and only monograph on motherhood to appear in Anglo-Saxon studies". The book received a fair amount of attention from reviewers, though opinions were mixed, one reviewer stating that "her historical analyses, however, are unsatisfying and problematic" and that Dockray-Miller too easily conflates patriarchy with heroic society. On the other hand, a reviewer in Speculum praised the book as "well argued and an important contribution to women's studies and Anglo-Saxon scholarship" One reviewer pointed out flaws and strengths: "Yet such problematic moments [renaming Grendel's Mother "the seawulf", and excluding Elene and Mary from her discussion of mothers] are offset by the books more sustained strengths: an exciting and original topic whose exploration raises awareness of motherhood in an early culture, and a persuasive thesis that is supported by fascinating historical analysis." Her chapter on mothers in Beowulf was considered "intriguing and persuasive" by one reviewer, but with the caveat that the conclusion on the politics of motherhood was "sketchy".
Her most recent monograph is Saints Edith and Æthelthryth: Princesses, Miracle Workers, and their Late Medieval Audience (Brepols, 2009). She has published numerous journal articles is a contributor to the Historical Dictionary of Women's Education in the United States (Greenwood, 1998).
- Acker, Paul (2006). "Horror and the Maternal in "Beowulf"". PMLA 121 (3): 702–16. doi:10.1632/003081206x142832.
- Klein, Stacy S. (2002). "Rev. of Dockray-Miller, Motherhood and Mothering in Anglo-Saxon England". Arthuriana 12 (3): 124–26.
- Stafford, Pauline (2001). "Rev. of Dockray-Miller, Motherhood and Mothering in Anglo-Saxon England". Albion 33 (3): 430–=32. doi:10.2307/4053202.
- French, Katherine L. (2002). "Rev. of Dockray-Miller, Motherhood and Mothering in Anglo-Saxon England". Speculum (1) 77: 164–65. doi:10.2307/2903816.
- Atkinson, Clarissa (2001). "Rev. of Dockray-Miller, Motherhood and Mothering in Anglo-Saxon England". The American Historical Review 106 (2): 628. doi:10.2307/2651726.
- Gretsch, Mechthild. "Rev. of Dockray-Miller". English Historical Review. CXXVI (518): 121–22. doi:10.1093/ehr/ceq438.
- Schwartz, Paula (July–Sep 2002). ""Women's Studies, Gender Studies": Le contexte américain". Vingtième Siècle. Revue d'histoire 75: 15–20. doi:10.2307/3771854.
- Mary Dockray-Miller profile Lesley University website