J.Joseph Lee

Glucksman Chair of Irish History

New York University


Professor Joe Lee came to New York University in 2002 from University College Cork, where he chaired the History Department and served for periods as Dean of Arts and as Vice President. Educated at University College Dublin, the Institute for European History in Mainz, Germany, and Peterhouse, Cambridge, he has also been a Fellow of Peterhouse, and held Visiting Fellow/Professor appointments as Senior Parnell Research Fellow in Irish Studies at Magdalene College, Cambridge; the Austrian Academy, Vienna; the European University, Florence; the University of Edinburgh, Mellon Professor, university of Pittsburgh, Distinguished Professor of World Peace, LBJ Graduate School of Public Affairs, U. Texas at Austin, and Exchange Prof. of Government at Colby College.

Professor Lee’s research interests have included over the years nineteenth and twentieth century German, European, Irish, British, and most recently Irish-American history and politics, as well as historiography. His books, The Modernization of Irish Society, 1848-1918 (Dublin, 1973, 2008) and the prize-winning Ireland, 1912-1985: Politics and Society (Dublin, 1989), now in its eleventh reprint, continue to generate lively debate. Professor Lee’s op-ed columns for the Sunday Tribune have been collected and published as The Shifting Balance of Power: Exploring the 20th Century (Dublin, 2000), and he edited, with Marion R. Casey, Making the Irish American: The History and Heritage of the Irish in the United States (NYU Press, 2006).

Lee served sixteen years as Chair of the Fulbright Commission for Ireland, 1980-96, and four years as an elected Independent member of the Irish Senate, and of the British-Irish Parliamentary Committee, from 1993-97. Elected a Member of the Royal Irish Academy in 1986, and an Eisenhower Fellow in 1989, he succeeded the inaugural director of Glucksman Ireland House, Professor Bob Scally, in 2002. Under his directorship, Glucksman Ireland House has established itself as a center for Irish-American oral history and started a new Master's Program in Irish & Irish-American Studies in 2007. Awarded an Honorary D.Litt by the National University of Ireland in 2006, Professor Lee’s current research focuses on nineteenth-century Irish nationalist Michael Davitt, on nationalism, and on Irish and Irish-American historiography in a trans-national context.