New York University Professor J. Joseph Lee will retire as director of Glucksman Ireland House, the university announced today.

NYU Professor J. Joseph Lee
NYU Professor J. Joseph Lee

New York University Professor J. Joseph Lee will retire as director of Glucksman Ireland House (GIH), the university announced today.

Lee, who will also retire from his positions as the Lewis L. and Loretta Glucksman Chair of Irish Studies and professor of history at NYU, will focus full-time on his research.

Hasia Diner, a professor of history and Hebrew and Judaic Studies at NYU, will serve as interim director, effective today, until Lee’s successor is appointed.  

Lee is best known for his seminal book, Ireland 1912-1985: Politics and Society (Cambridge University Press, 1989, 11th printing, 2006), and for Modernisation of Irish Society, 1848-1918 (Gill & Macmillan, 1973, 3rd. ed. 2006).

His co-edited works include Making the Irish American (NYU Press, 2007), with Marion R. Casey, and he has also published over 100 scholarly articles and chapters in books and periodicals, including on the industrial revolution in Germany in Cambridge Economic History of Europe (Cambridge University Press, 1978), edited by Peter Mathias and C.H. Feinstein. Lee was inducted into the Royal Irish Academy in 1985 and was elected to the Irish Senate in 1993.

“I feel deeply honored to have been for the past 15 years Glucksman Chair of Irish Studies at Glucksman Ireland House, NYU, a unique institution founded with the generosity of Loretta Glucksman and the late Lew Glucksman,” Lee said. “In particular, I want to thank the president of New York University, Andrew Hamilton, the provost, Katherine Fleming, and the dean of the Faculty of Arts and Science, Tom Carew, for ensuring that Glucksman Ireland House remains the premier center of Irish and Irish-American Studies in the United States. I am indebted to the talented faculty and administration at Glucksman Ireland House and across the NYU campus, as well as our colleagues in NYU’s Department of History, most recently under the leadership of Professor David Ludden. I especially want to thank the Advisory Board of GIH, including its chair, Loretta Brennan Glucksman and president, Judith McGuire, for their inspired and visionary support.”

Commenting on Lee’s decision, Loretta Brennan Glucksman, chair of the Advisory Board of Glucksman Ireland House, remarked, “Professor Lee has been an immensely successful Chair of Irish Studies at NYU and has greatly enhanced the global reputation of Glucksman Ireland House for excellence in teaching and groundbreaking research in the study of Ireland, Irish America and the Irish diaspora in New York and the global communities. Under Joe’s leadership since 2002, and building on the enduring legacy of the inaugural and founding director, Professor Robert J. Scally, there have been many achievements, including the development of a Master of Arts program in Irish and Irish-American Studies, regular book publications and the peer-reviewed American Journal of Irish Studies, the flourishing of the Archives of Irish America, a dynamic public programing schedule, and the presence of Irish Studies on public radio in New York City through the Glucksman Ireland House NYU Radio Hour. As we plan for the next 25 years of Glucksman Ireland House, we need just stay true to this brilliant course Joe has set for us and build upon it.”

Brennan Glucksman continued, “I am delighted that Hasia Diner, Paul S. and Sylvia Steinberg Professor of American Jewish History, has agreed to become the acting director of Glucksman Ireland House. Professor Diner, one of the most distinguished historians in America, teaches regularly at Glucksman Ireland House, and has written several books on the histories of European immigrant groups, including the well-received Erin’s Daughters in America: Irish Immigrant Women in the Nineteenth Century (The John Hopkins University Press, 1983) and Hungering for America: Italian, Irish, and Jewish Foodways in the Age of Migration (Harvard University Press, 2001).”

The President of the Advisory Board of Glucksman Ireland House, Judith McGuire, added, “Professor Lee has led Glucksman Ireland House NYU to the forefront of global Irish Studies through his outstanding scholarship, inspired leadership and preeminence as an Irish historian and public intellectual. He and the talented faculty at Glucksman Ireland House have built up robust graduate and undergraduate programs in Irish Studies at NYU, which in their interdisciplinary and transnational focus enrich the entire University. Joe is much loved by his colleagues and by many generations of students around the world for the integrity of his scholarship, the eloquence of his lectures, his stylish writing, his passion for learning and his careful and thoughtful mentorship of students. While we will greatly miss Joe as Glucksman chair and director of Glucksman Ireland House, he has assured us that he will continue to be closely involved with NYU going forward, and particularly as Glucksman Ireland House celebrates its 25th anniversary in 2018.”

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