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Writing the History of Civil War

In this UCD Centre for War Studies seminar, some of the leading scholars of civil wars discussed their unique approaches to the subject.

On 12 October 2018 UCD Centre for War Studies invited some of the leading scholars of civil war to UCD School of History to discuss their unique approaches to the subject.

Taking part in the seminar were: Dr. Anne Dolan (Trinity), Professor Stathis Kalyvas (Oxford), and Professor Glenda Gilmore (Yale / UCD). The event coincided with the 10th anniversary of the setting up of the UCD Centre for War Studies and was chaired by its director, Professor Robert Gerwarth, who is also Head of UCD School of History.

The event featured three excellent presentations, on the American Civil War (Gilmore), the Irish Civil War (Dolan), and violence in civil war (Kalyvas) respectively. These presentations were followed by a discussion with the audience. Thanks to UCD College of Arts and Humanities, the event was recorded and is now available as both a video and a podcast.

Podcast (iTunes / Soundcloud)


Dr. Anne Dolan (Trinity College Dublin)

Anne is Associate Professor in Modern Irish History. Her research has examined the nature and the legacy of the Irish civil war and she is currently working on an examination of violence and killing throughout the revolutionary period in Ireland.

She is particularly interested in the consequences of violence at a political and at a personal level and in placing the Irish experience in a wider context. This work stems from a broader interest in the nature of the two states in Ireland in the inter-war period. Her research is also moving into the area of popular experience in twentieth century Ireland.

Dr. Anne Dolan on writing the history of the Irish Civil War


Professor Glenda Gilmore (Yale / UCD)

Glenda Elizabeth Gilmore is the Peter V. and C. Vann Woodward Professor of History, African American Studies, and American Studies at Yale University and current holder of The Mary Ball Washington Professorship of American History at UCD. She earned her Ph.D. at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Her most recent book, These United States:  A Nation in the Making, 1890 to the Present, coauthored with Thomas Sugrue, appeared as a trade book in October, 2015, published by W. W. Norton. It was published as two textbooks in the spring of 2016, one on 1890 to the present, and the other on 1945 to the present.  Defying Dixie: The Radical Roots of Civil Rights, 1919-1950, was one of the American Library Association’s Notable Books of 2008, and the Washington Post’s Best Books of 2008. She is the editor of Who Were the Progressives? and co-edited Jumpin’ Jim Crow: Southern Politics from Civil War to Civil Rights.  Her first book, Gender and Jim Crow: Women and the Politics of White Supremacy in North Carolina, 1896-1920, published in 1996, won Frederick Jackson Turner Award, the James A. Rawley Prize, the Julia Cherry Spruill Prize, and the Heyman Prize.

Professor Glenda Gilmore (Yale / UCD) on writing the history of the American Civil War


Professor Stathis Kalyvas (Oxford)

Stathis is the Gladstone Professor of Government at the Department of Politics and International Relations at the University of Oxford and a fellow of All Souls College. Until December 2017, he was the Arnold Wolfers Professor of Political Science at Yale University, where he also founded and headed the Program on Order, Conflict and Violence.

His research includes the dynamics of polarization and civil war, ethnic and non-ethnic violence, and the formation of cleavages and identities. He has also researched party politics and political institutions in Europe. He has published extensively, in English, Greek, French, Italian, and Spanish and has been awarded the Gregory Luebbert Award for the best article in comparative politics published in 1998-1999. He is the author of The Rise of Christian Democracy in Europe (Cornell University Press, 1996) which received the J. David Greenstone Prize and is presently completing a book on The Logic of Violence in Civil War.

Prof. Stathis Kalyvas (Oxford) gives an overview of past research on violence in civil war.