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November 19, 2012

Joseph Lennon

Joseph Lennon, Director, Irish Studies Program
Associate Professor, Department of English
I specialize in Irish Studies, but my research also generally follows the influence of colonialism and its effects in Ireland, Britain, and India. I have written primarily on the Irish Literary Revival, including authors such as W.B. Yeats, James Joyce, August Gregory, James Stephens, and James and Margaret Cousins. But as with the range of my first book, Irish Orientalism: A Literary and Intellectual History (2004, 2008), my research interests stretch back to medieval origin legends and up to modern and contemporary Irish writing.

My work on Irish Orientalism has led me to investigate the origins of the ideas and practices of cross-colonial hunger striking in Ireland, Britain, and India. My current book project focuses on the first modern hunger strike by the Scottish artist Marion Wallace-Dunlop in London's Holloway Prison in 1909. After discovering her diaries and letters in a London attic, the book project was born; it closely reads texts of the day—plays, novels, newspapers, histories—situating her own writing, paintings, and protests within the intellectual moment of 1909. I am especially interested in how these texts, like the protests of the time, articulate matrices of power. This work, as well as my work on hunger representations in Ireland and India, examines how the cultural production of desire, hunger, and gender impinge on modern consumer culture.

I also write poems and have an interest in contemporary poetry and drama, particularly that of Ireland.

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