Fonds - Abbyann Lynch fonds

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Abbyann Lynch fonds


  • 1960s – 2000s (Creation)

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Extent and medium

1.69 meters of textual and audio-visual records

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Name of creator

(1928 -)

Biographical history

Abbyann Day Lynch was born Abbyann Day in New Jersey in 1928. She began her secondary studies in the fall of 1945 at Manhattan College, earning a B.A. in Science and Philosophy (cum laude) in 1949. That fall she moved to Canada and began a Master of Arts degree at St. Michael’s College, University of Toronto, graduating in 1951. A year later she earned a Licentiate in Mediæval Studies (L.M.S.) from the Pontifical Institute of Medieval Studies at St. Michael’s. Finally, in 1953 she earned her Ph.D. in Philosophy and Paleography, also from St. Michael’s. Armand Augustine Maurer (1915-2008) supervised her thesis, which is entitled “The ‘Concordantia Veritatis’ Attributed to Benedict of Assignano: Text and Study.” In 1954 Day married Lawrence Edward Michael “Larry” Lynch (1915-2001), a native Torontonian and philosophy teacher at St. Michael’s who served as College Principal from 1976 to 1981. Together they had six children: Lisa, Emily, Edward, Martha, Paul, and Christopher.

Throughout the 1950s and 1960s Dr. Lynch taught periodically at various nursing colleges. In 1969, Lawrence Lynch appointed his wife to a part-time teaching position at St. Michael’s. Three years later she began teaching the course “Morality, Medicine, and the Law,” the first class of its kind at the University. In 1975 she earned a full-time, tenured position, and shortly thereafter helped to found the Collaborative Program in Bioethics. Lynch remained at St. Michael’s through 1985. From 1986 to 1990 she served as the director of the Westminster Institute for Ethics and Human Values, based at the University of Western Ontario in London, Ontario. After her term as director concluded, she founded the Bioethics Department at Toronto’s Hospital for Sick Children, serving as the department director until 1994, at which point she retired. In her retirement Lynch operated a bioethics consulting business named Ethics in Health Care Associates. In 1993 she was awarded the Order of Ontario, and in 1997 was made a Member of the Order of Canada.

Archival history

Immediate source of acquisition or transfer

Lynch’s family transferred the records to the University of St. Michael’s College Archives in 2016.

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Scope and content

Fonds demonstrates Lynch’s professional output over the course of four decades. The body of records primarily represents her written work, while there are also audio-visual recordings of lectures and presentations. Items include: published articles, typed and hand-written speeches and lectures, professional reports, newspaper articles about Lynch, recordings of lectures and presentations, recordings of television and radio appearances.

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