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Maria McGarrity

Professor of EnglishAssociate Member, Seminar in Irish Studies, Columbia University, New York

B.A., Rutgers University M.A., University of New OrleansPh.D., University of Miami


My work in British, Irish, and Caribbean literatures and cultures grows out of a desire to examine the intersections between literary modernism and the global impact of colonialism. I am particularly interested in the demise of the British Empire and the role of geography in creating what I call an "island imaginary" for writers. For example, EA Markham's Letters from Ulster and the Hugo Poems joins the "Troubles" of Northern Ireland with the aftermath of Hurricane Hugo in the Caribbean and highlights the imperfect and yet enduring relation among these cultures. The complex interplay of cultures that makes up both Ireland and the Caribbean, the islands they inhabit both literally and metaphorically, ensures that neither peoples nor cultures exist in anything less than a "meta-archipelago." The links in these chains of islands and peoples, dispersed geographically, economically, and politically connect strongly not simply throughout the North Atlantic but throughout the larger diasporic world.


Modern British, Irish, Caribbean, and Postcolonial Literatures and Theory; Twentieth-Century, Transnational, and Transatlantic Studies.



  • Allusions In Omeros: Notes and a Guide to Derek Walcott's Masterpiece. Gainesville, Florida: University Press of Florida, 2015.
  • Washed by the Gulf Stream: the Historic and Geographic Relation of Irish and Caribbean Literature. Newark, DE: University of Delaware Press, 2008.

Edited Volumes

  • Caribbean Irish Connections, co-edited with Alison Donnell and Evelyn O'Callaghan. Mona, Jamaica: University of the West Indies Press, 2015.
  • Irish Modernism and the Global Primitive, co-edited collection with Claire Culleton. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2009.

Articles and Book Chapters

  • “The ‘Indecent Postures of Island Cricket’: James Joyce’s A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man and Joseph O’Neill’s Netherland,” James Joyce Quarterly  (Forthcoming). 25 pages.
  • “Imagining the ‘Wettest Indies:’ the Transatlantic Network of Derek Walcott and James Joyce.” Joycean Legacies. Ed. Martha C. Carpenter. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2015: 213-229.
  • “Introduction,” co-authored with Alison Donnell and Evelyn O’Callaghan, Caribbean Irish Connections. Mona, Jamaica: University of the West Indies Press, 2015.
  • “Cataloguing Ireland: Derek Walcott’s Omeros,” Caribbean Irish Connections. Mona, Jamaica: University of the West Indies Press, 2015.
  • “Introduction,” co-authored with Claire Culleton, Irish Modernism and the Global Primitive. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2009. 1-15.
  • “Primitive Emancipation: Religion, Sexuality, and Freedom in Joyce’s A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man and Ulysses” in Irish Modernism and the Global Primitive.  New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2009: 133-149.
  • “Hell’s Kitchen as Contact Zone: The African in Jim Sheridan’s In America,” College Language Association Journal.  51 (2008): 304-323.
  • “‘I’m a Naughty Girl’: Prostitution and Outsider Women in James Joyce’s ‘The Boarding House’ and Eric Walrond’s ‘The Palm Porch,’” with co-author, Louis J. Parascandola, College Language Association Journal.  50 (2006): 141-161.
  • “Mary Seacole’s Wonderful Adventures: an Eastward Economy of Disease,” Victorians Institute Journal.  34 (2006):127-144.
  • “The Gulf Stream and the Epic Drives of Joyce and Walcott.” Ariel: a Review of International English Literature. 34 (2003): 1-22.
  • “Impossible Sanctuary: Geography, Sexual Transgression, and Flight in Big House and Plantation Novels.” Journal of West Indian Literature. 11 (2003): 29-57.
  • William Paulet Carey’s Critical Description of Thomas Stothard’s   Canterbury Pilgrims. Edited with an introduction in The Illustrated Chaucer.  Joseph Rosenblum and William Finley, eds. New Castle, Delaware and London, England: Oak Knoll Press and The British Library, 2003.  379-422.
  • “The ‘Houses of decay’ and Shakespeare’s ‘Sonnet XIII:’ Another Nexus in ‘Proteus.’” James Joyce Quarterly.  35 (1997): 153-155.