Dr Niall Whelehan

Senior Lecturer


Personal statement

My research and teaching focus on the nineteenth and twentieth centuries and themes of migration, political violence, nationalism, colonialism and radicalism, mainly relating to Ireland and the Irish diaspora. I completed my doctorate at the European University Institute, Florence. Before coming to Strathclyde, I worked at Bielefeld University, Germany, NUI Glaway and the University of Edinburgh.

My book Changing Land: Diaspora Activism and the Irish Land War  appeared in late 2021 with NYU Press, in the Gluckman Irish Diaspora Series. It is based on research supported by a Marie Skłodowska-Curie Intra-European Fellowship and examines radical networks in Ireland and Irish migrant communities in Scotland, England, the United States and Argentina. My first book, The Dynamiters: Irish nationalism and political violence in the wider world, 1867-1900, appeared with Cambridge University Press in 2012.

My next project is a book length study of Irish migration in the south Atlantic in the long nineteenth centiry, and in particular of John O'Dwyer Creaghe, an Irish emigrant who became a leading figure in the Argentine anarchist movement.

I teach classes on the history of the Irish diaspora, the global history of terrorism, Irish nationalism and radicalism, and Ireland and colonialism, at undergraduate and postgraduate levels. I am the Year 4/Honours coordinator for History at Strathclyde.

Along with teaching and research, I’m committed to public history and have contributed pieces to the Irish Times and RTE Brainstorm. I am interested in the interpretation of history through music and film.For a number of years I have organised the film series 'Screening Irish History', which has run at the Glasgow Film Theatre, the CCA Glasgow and Edinburgh’s Filmhouse.

I am presently working on a new collaborative project with several musicians on the interpretation of primary historical sources through music. Called 'Bring Your Own Hammer', the first album of original compositions will be released in 2022/23.



Changing Land






Landlords, radicals and Irish emigrants in Argentina
Whelehan Niall
Land and feminism : Marguerite Moore and the Ladies' Land League
Whelehan Niall
30 (2022)
Changing Land : Diaspora Activism and the Irish Land War
Whelehan Niall
The Glucksman Irish Diaspora Series The Glucksman Irish Diaspora Series (2021)
Book review: Ribbon Societies in Nineteenth-Century Ireland and its Diaspora by Kyle Hughes and Donald M. MacRaild
Whelehan Niall
Irish Economic and Social History Vol 48, pp. 163-165 (2021)
Saving Ireland in Juteopolis : gender, class and diaspora in the Irish Ladies' Land League
Whelehan Niall
History Workshop Journal Vol 90, pp. 74-95 (2020)
Sacco and Vanzetti, Mary Donovan and transatlantic radicalism in the 1920s
Whelehan Niall
Irish Historical Studies Vol 44, pp. 131-146 (2020)

More publications


I teach undergraduate and postgraduate modules on the history of Ireland and Irish migration, and the history of political violence and terrorism.


I welcome applications from potential PhD students who wish to work on areas of:

  • modern Ireland and the Irish diaspora
  • migration
  • terrorism and political violence
  • Cinema and Irish history

Professional activities

Changing land: Emigrants and visions of radical reform in nineteenth-century Ireland
European Social Science History Conference 2021
Terrorism and Transnationality
Invited speaker
A Global History of the Irish Revolution 1916-23
Invited speaker
30th anniversary Reflections on JJ Lee's Ireland 1912-1985: Politics and Society
Scotland and the Global Irish Revolution
Invited speaker

More professional activities


Hear the Hammers Ring: Shipyard Workers, Literary Culture and Communities in Clydeside and Belfast, 1840-1914
Whelehan, Niall (Co-investigator)
AHRC Collaborative Doctoral Award 2021-2025. This supervisor-led studentship application was led by Prof. Kirstie Blair, with myself as second supervisor, and the Scottish Maritime Museum. The student (Ronan McGreechin) was selected after interview. (£72K).
01-Jan-2021 - 01-Jan-2025
Bring your own Hammer: History, Music and Migrant Lives
Whelehan, Niall (Principal Investigator)
This project combines music, digital technologies and primary historical sources to engage with new audiences through the creation of an original song-cycle and website on the topic of migration. External collaborators include the musicians, the Verdant Works Museum, Scotland, the Irish Emigration Museum, Dublin, the University of Limerick, and the Irish Consulate General, Scotland. The reach and significance of the project’s impact will be substantial, aiming to change perceptions of Irish migration in profound ways. This project aims to be one of the three History impact case studies for the next REF cycle.
01-Jan-2020 - 31-Jan-2022
Emigrant Irishwomen and Dundee’s Textile Industry, 1830-1930
Whelehan, Niall (Principal Investigator)
50% share on successful supervisor-led AHRC Collaborative Doctoral Award studentship application, £72K. The studentship began on 1 October 2019, the student selected after interview is Niamh Coffey. (Co-supervised with the University of Edinburgh).
01-Jan-2019 - 30-Jan-2023
Diaspora, Colonialism, Anarchism and the Transnational Life of an Irish Doctor in South America
Whelehan, Niall (Principal Investigator)
01-Jan-2019 - 30-Jan-2022

More projects