Mary Jean Bailey DeMarr, retired Professor of English and Women’s Studies at Indiana State University, passed away on Saturday, April 22, at Westminster Village. She was born to William Fleming Bailey and Laura Shauman Bailey on September 20, 1932, in Champaign, IL.
She graduated from Jacksonville, IL, High School and earned her BA in English from Lawrence College where she earned Phi Beta Kappa and Phi Kappa Phi honors, and her MA and PhD in English from the University of Illinois.
She taught at Willamette College before joining the Department of English at Indiana State University, where she specialized in American Literature and was instrumental in the development of the Women’s Studies Program.
Scholarly memberships include the Modern Language Association, the Modern Humanities Research Association, and the Popular Culture Association. For more than twenty years, she was involved in the yearly publication of the Modern Humanities Research Association’s Annual Bibliography of English Language and Literature in its American Office at Indiana State University, eventually becoming the American Editor.
Awards that she received for her scholarship include the 1996 Dove Award for “Outstanding Contributions to the Study of Mystery and Detective Fiction” by the Popular Culture Association and the 2000 MidAmerica Award for outstanding contributions to the study of Midwestern American Literature by the Society for the Study of Midwestern Literature.
Among her published works are: Adolescent Female Portraits in the American Novel, 1961-1981, and the Adolescent in the American Novel Since 1960 (both co-authored with Jane S. Bakerman), as well as Colleen McCullough, a Critical Companion; Barbara Kinsolver, a Critical Companion; and Kaye Gibbons, a Critical Companion, as well as numerous articles on American and Mystery/Detective fiction.
Other memberships include the American Civil Liberties Union, the American Association of University Professors, the American Association of University Women.
Burial will be in the Cedar Grove Cemetery in Kirkwood, IL. There will be a memorial service at a later date.
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