Skip to main content

Secondary navigation:

James H. Murphy

Professor of English and Director of Irish Studies and the Center for Irish Programs at Boston College

James H. Murphy
James H. Murphy

James H Murphy CM, PhD, DLitt, FRHistS, is Professor of English and Director of Irish Studies and the Center for Irish Programs at Boston College. He was formerly Professor of English at DePaul University, Chicago. 

Professor Murphy is the author of five monographs and the editor of nine other books. He is a scholar of nineteenth-century Ireland whose work principally focuses on the political history and the history of fiction of the period.  His books on political history trace the relationshp between political culture and offices of constitutional affinity between Britain and Ireland and include Abject Loyalty: Nationalism and Monarchy in Ireland during the Reign of Queen Victoria (2001) and Ireland’s Czar: Gladstonian Government and the Lord Lieutenancies of the Red Earl Spencer, 1868-86 (2014). His trilogy on the history of fiction consists of Catholic Fiction and Social Reality in Ireland, 1873-1922 (1997), Ireland, a Social, Cultural and Literary History, 1791-1891 (2003) and Irish Novelists and the Victorian Age (2011). This final volume was based on a reading of nearly 400 novels and greatly expanded the scope of research into Irish Victorian fiction, particularly fiction by women. It was published by Oxford in the same year as Dr. Murphy’s edited work, the 700 page Oxford History of the Irish Book, Volume 4: the Irish Book in English, 1800-91 (2011).  He has also written on religion, education, gender and sexuality.

Professor Murphy is a former president of the Society for the Study of Nineteenth-Century Ireland and has served on the Inner International Assessment Board for the Irish Research Council, Government of Ireland Postgraduate Scholarship Scheme and on the College of Reviewers for the Canada Research Chairs Programmes. He has held a visiting fellowship at Oxford University and been the Burns  Library Visiting Scholar in Irish Studies at Boston College. He has been widely employed as a member of dissertation committees, as an assessor of scholarly work for promotion and tenure, and as a reviewer of scholarly writing for academic journals and academic and university presses. He has organised international conferences, such as the 2013 meeting of the American Conference for Irish Studies, and been a frequent recipient of research grants. He has taught in universities on both sides of the Atlantic. At DePaul University he directed the Irish Studies program and sat on the faculty’s most senior committees, the University Board for Promotion and Tenure, the University Research Council and the Quality of Instruction Council. He is a prolific reviewer of books for scholarly journals and is a member of the editorial board of the New Hibernia Review. He has been a key-note speaker at conferences on many occasions.

Professor Murphy's publications may be viewed at: J. Murphy publications

Contact Professor Murphy at:

Boston College Center for Irish Programs
Connolly House, Room 207
300 Hammond Street
Chestnut Hill, MA  02467

office tel: 617-552-4847
email:     james.h.murphy@bc.edu