Photo of Micheline White

Micheline White


Degrees:B.A. (Toronto), M.A. (Ottawa), Ph.D. (Loyola, Chicago)
Phone:613-520-2600 x 1356


Micheline White is an Associate Professor in the College of the Humanities and the Department of English. She began teaching at Carleton as an Assistant Professor in 1998. She completed a B.A. (honours) in English Literature at the University of Toronto in 1989 and then moved to Aomori, Japan, where she taught English at a Japanese High-school for a year. She received an M.A. in English Literature from the University of Ottawa in 1992 and a Ph.D. in English Literature from Loyola University Chicago in May 1998. Her main field of study is English Renaissance literature, and she is particularly interested in women’s writing and Reformation history. She has published several recent articles on Katherine Parr.

Research Interests

  • Katherine Parr
  • Sixteenth and seventeenth-century religious writing
  • Women’s writing and literary networks
  • Reformation studies
  • Digital Humanities

2023-2024 Courses

HUMS 3000A: Culture and Imagination (F)

On sabbatical 1 Jan-30 June 2024.  Scholar-in-Residence, Newberry Library, Chicago IL.

Most Recent Publication

“Katherine Parr’s Giftbooks, Henry VIII’s Marginalia, and the Display of Royal Power and Piety,” Renaissance Quarterly 76 (2023): 39-83.

This essay examines deluxe copies of Katherine Parr’s “Psalms or Prayers” (1544) distributed by Parr and Henry VIII as gifts as part of Henry’s wartime campaign against Scotland and France. The book promoted prayers for the king and his army, and Parr used hand illumination to amplify its aesthetic character and to elicit political loyalty. I also discuss previously unknown annotations made in a copy in the Wormsley library. I argue that they were made by Henry VIII and that they shed new light on Parr and Henry’s unique political partnership and on Henry’s responses to the health issues and political challenges that dominated the final years of his life.

To learn more about this article, please see: CNN, The Globe and Mail, The Times (London), Notes From the Margins, “How Kateryn Parr Championed the Reformation” (Not Just the Tudors podcast); Katherine Parr’s Giftbooks & Henry’s Marginalia (Talking Tudors podcast); CBC Radio (8 mins); CTV News or Global News TV.
This article was highlighted by CTV News as one of the “15 Best Art, Design, and Archaeology Discoveries” of 2023.

Grants and Awards Since 2011

SSHRC Insight Development Grant: “Elite Tudor Women’s Prayer Books as Material, Devotional, and Socio-Political Artefacts.” Tenure: June 2019-June 2024.

Carleton Research Development Grant, July 2015-July 2016. Title: “The Political Activism of Queen Katherine Parr ”

FASS Teaching Award, 2015

FASS Research Award, 2012

SSHRCC Standard Research Grant:  2011-2014

Edited Books

Leah Knight, Micheline White, and Elizabeth Sauer, eds.Women’s Bookscapes in Early Modern Britain: Reading, Ownership, Circulation. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 2018.

Micheline White, ed. English Women, Religion, and Textual Production, 1500-1625. Burlington, VT: Ashgate Press, 2011.

Micheline White, ed. Ashgate Critical Essays on Women Writers in England: Anne Lock, Isabella Whitney, and Aemilia Lanyer. Burlington, VT: Ashgate Press, 2009.

Selected Recent Publications

“Katherine Parr: Wartime Consort and Author,” in English Consorts: Power, Influence, and Dynasty, ed. Aidan Norrie. London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2022, pp.139-59.

“Katherine Parr (1512–1548), Protestant Queen, Author, and Influencer” in Women Reformers: Protestant Voices in Early Modern Europe, ed. Kirsi I. Stjerna. Fortress Press, 2022, pp. 141-50.

“Katherine Parr and Royal Religious Complaint: Complaining For and About Henry VIII,” in Early Modern Women’s Complaint: Gender, Form, and Politics, eds. Sarah C.E. Ross and Rosalind Smith. Cham, Switzerland: Palgrave Macmillan, 2020, pp. 47–65.

“Katherine Parr, Translation, and the Dissemination of Erasmus’s Views on War and Peace,” Renaissance and Reformation / Renaissance et Reforme 43.2 (2020): 67­-91.

“Katherine Parr’s Marginalia: Putting the Wisdom of Chrysostom and Solomon into Practice,” in Women’s Bookscapes in Early Modern Britain: Reading, Ownership, Circulation. Eds.Leah Knight, Micheline White, and Elizabeth Sauer. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 2018, pp. 21-42.

“Women in Worship: Continuity and Change in the Prayers of Elizabeth Tyrwhit and Frances Aburgavenny” in A History of Early Modern Women’s Writing, ed. Patricia Phillippy. Cambridge:  Cambridge University Press, 2018, 170-185.

“Katherine Parr, Henry VIII, and Royal Literary Collaboration,” in Gender, Authorship and Early Modern Women’s Collaboration, ed. Patricia Pender.  New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2017, 23-46.

“The Psalms, War, and Royal Iconography: Katherine Parr’s Psalms or Prayers (1544) and Henry VIII as David.” Renaissance Studies 29.4 (Sept 2015): 554-575.

“Pray for the Monarch: The surprising contributions of Katherine Parr and Queen Elizabeth I to the Book of Common Prayer.” Times Literary Supplement, 3 April, 2015: 14-15.

This piece sheds new light on the historical origins of the “Prayer for the Queen’s Majesty,” a prayer that appeared in the 1559 Anglican Book of Common Prayer and that is still used today. It demonstrates that the prayer is derived from a Latin prayer by Georg Witzel for the Holy Roman Emperor printed in 1541. It was adapted as a prayer for Henry VIII, translated by Katherine Parr, and disseminated in her 1544 Psalms or Prayers, a book of wartime prayers. Parr made fascinating modifications as she translated, enhancing Henry’s virtues and military prowess. Although 19th and early 20th-century historians noted the connection between the 1559 “Prayer for the Queen’s Majesty” and the earlier “Prayer for the King,” they were unsure of the origins of the prayer and did not openly attribute it to Parr or examine Parr’s literary skills. Parr is not mentioned at all in more recent accounts of the Book of Common Prayer. This piece also argues that the prayer was almost certainly inserted into public worship and edited in 1559 by Elizabeth I, Parr’s beloved step-daughter. The prayer appeared in Elizabeth’s Chapel Royal five months before the printing of the 1559 BCP and she had translated the prayer in her youth as a gift for her father. Elizabeth made the prayer more suited to her sex, toning down the passages about military glory and ferocity. This means that Elizabeth was likely an editor of a female-authored part of the BCP, a detail that complicates the general assumption that the prayers in the Tudor Books of Common Prayer were compiled, written, translated or edited by clergymen.

2015 Media Interviews About Katherine Parr, Elizabeth, and the Book of Common Prayer

Micheline White speaks to Mary Hynes on CBC’s Tapestry about her Research on “How Two Queens Revolutionized the Book of Common Prayer.”

Micheline White speaks to the Anglican Communion News Service

Recent Graduate Supervisions

Meghan Newman, “A Catholic Woman and A Catholic Queen: The nuanced religious expression of Mary I in Reformation Era England.” MA Thesis. Co-supervision. Department of History. Defended September, 2021.

Bethany Pehora, “Rhetoric in the Early Imprisonment Letters of Mary Queen of Scots.”  MA Thesis. Co-supervision. Department of History. Defended September, 2021.

Amy-Lee Parent: “The Rest is Drag”: A Look at Cross-Dressing and Gender-Play in As You Like It and Twelfth Night. MRP, 2018.

Jordan Plescia “Devotion and Didacticism: Elizabeth I’s Private Prayers.” MRP, 2016.