Dr Ruan O'Donnell

Dr Ruan O'Donnell
Academic Staff
Senior Lecturer
Room: C1075

Dr. Ruán O’DonnellB.A. (N.U.I.), M.A. (N.U.I), Ph.D. (A.N.U.)
Senior Lecturer in History

Research Interests:  Modern Irish, European and Australian history, The United Irishmen; imperialism; Irish revolutionary movements; commemoration.

Following work at the Australian National University, University College Dublin, National University of Ireland Galway and St. Patrick's College, Drumcondra, I joined the University of Limerick in 1998. In 2005 I was promoted Senior Lecturer. I am a Director of the Irish Manuscripts Commission and member of the Universities Ireland Decade of Commemorations Committee. My involvement in academic publishing includes ongoing roles as co-series and commissiong editor of the '16 Lives' project for O'Brien Press, as well as series editor of the ‘Irish Abroad’ series for Irish Academic Press. In 2010-2011 I was on sabbatical at the University of Notre Dame, Indiana, where I held the position of O'Donnell Visiting Chair of Irish Studies in the Keugh/ Naughton Institute. A frequent contributor to print and broadcast media, I have been a member of the National Union of Journalists since 1998. My UL positions include being AHSS Director of the Final Year Project and a member of the Ethics Committee, formerly Course Director of the MA in Art and Architecture, I have resumed the position of CD of the MA in History of Family and BA in English and History. Academic liaison with the State University of New York, I am the founding and current Director of the Irish Life and Literature Summer School.

Current Teaching

  • International History of the Twentieth Century’ (HI5012)
  • The Irish Conflict, 1948-98’ ( HI 4117)
  • 'Modern Ireland' (HU5000)
  • ‘Ireland: revolution and independence, 1898-1972’ (HI 4102)
  • ‘The history of Modern Australia, 1788-1918’ (HI 4148).

Research Interests 

My early research concentrated on the history of late Eighteenth and early Nineteenth century Ireland, colonial Australia and Irish radicalism worldwide. More recent work concerns the modern Irish Troubles with particular reference to political prisoners and the international context. I am also working on a long-term project regarding Irish republicanism in the period 1948-1962 and another focussing on the history of international pro-Irish Republican networks, notably in North America, Australasia and the UK. I am completing work on my sixth academic monograph.

Select recent publications

Special Category, The IRA in English prisons, Vol. 2, 1978-1998 (Dublin and Portland, Forthcoming 2014).

Special Category, The IRA in English prisons, Vol. 1, 1968-1978 (Dublin and Portland, 2012)

(Co-Editor) Colm O’Gaora, On the run, The story of an Irish freedom fighter (Cork, 2011)

The Irish Famine (Dublin, 2008)

‘The Provisional IRA: History, Politics and Remembrance’ in Jim Smyth (ed.) Remembering the Troubles(Forthcoming 2014)

‘Meath during the revolutionary period, 1791-1798’ in William Nolan (ed.) Meath: History and Society (Forthcoming 2014)