I first engaged in Irish Studies when earning my PH.D. in English at the University of Iowa (1975), where I wrote my dissertation on “The North American Novels of Edna O’Brien and Brian Moore.” After receipt of my J.D. from the University of Notre Dame (1978), I spent several years at Notre Dame’s Center of Civil and Human Rights (1979-1983), where I worked closely with the U.S. Select Commission on Refugee Law and Policy. Since 1980, my principal academic focus has been U.S. immigration law, policy, and history, with a strong secondary focus on migration from Ireland during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, emphasizing institutional, political, religious, and legal factors affecting its timing, direction, and size.
Now an Emeritus Professor at the Maurer School of Law, Indiana University (retired May, 2009) I am working on a book addressing these interests. I have also addressed them in a series of conference papers, including:
Transatlantic Studies Association Annual Conference, Northumbria University, Newcastle-on-Tyne, UK (July 8-11, 2013) (Paper entitled “Bounded by Race, Religion, Security, and Law: The Trajectory of Irish Catholic Migration to and from the British West Indies, ca. 1620-1807”)
NISN (Nordic Irish Studies Network) Liminal Borderlands Conferemce, Dalarna University, Falün, Sweden (April 22, 2004) (Paper entitled “Lines on a Map: Contested Legal and Political Space in Northern Ireland”)
Transatlantic Studies Association Annual Conference, University of Dundee, Dundee, Scotland (July 10, 2002) (Paper on the Legal and Social construction of Race in Ireland and America);
Tenth Annual Congress on the Enlightenment (University College Dublin, July, 1999) (Paper on the Regulation of Immigration in Colonial North America);
Bi-Annual Workshop for Immigration Law Teachers (Boalt Hall, Cal-Berkeley, May, 1998) Paper on the Methodology of Studying Immigration Policy and Law in Colonial North America);
American Conference on Irish Studies, Southern Regional Meeting, Columbia, S.C., 2/98 (Paper Challenging the Historical Premises of Noel Ignatiev’s How the Irish Became White);
International Conference on “The Scattering,” Irish Centre for Migration Studies, University College, Cork, Ireland, 9/97 (Paper entitled “The ‘Great’ Catholic Migration, 1620-1775: Motive, Opportunity, Policy, and Failure”).