Noted Irish Poet-Scholar Eamonn Wall Named 2014 Charles A. Heimbold, Jr. Chair of Irish Studies at Villanova University

Wall, an Internationally Recognized Poet, Becomes the 16th Heimbold Professor of Irish Studies in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

VILLANOVA, Pa. – Villanova University has selected noted Irish poet and scholar Eamonn Wall as the 2014 Charles A. Heimbold, Jr. Chair of Irish Studies in its College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. The prolific author of six volumes of poetry and two essay collections in addition to numerous stories and essays, Wall will teach an Honors Poetry Writing Workshop and an Irish-American Fiction seminar during the spring semester. The visiting artist-in-residence program offers Irish Studies students the enriching experience of a close classroom experience with one of Ireland’s finest literary voices.

“We are fortunate this year to have with us a great Irish-born poet of the diaspora, who writes as much of U.S. landscapes as he does of the Irish ones, “ Joseph Lennon, director of Villanova’s Irish Studies Program said. “Both a poet and a scholar, Eamonn Wall melds Irish and American sensibilities in his poetry, as Colum McCann does in prose.”

A native of Enniscorthy, Co. Wexford, Ireland, Wall attended University College, Dublin, earning a B.A. in English and history and a diploma in education. After moving to the United States in the early 1980s, Wall took a M.A. from the University of Wisconsin—Milwaukee and a Ph.D. from the City University of New York—Graduate Center.  He presently serves as the Smurfit-Stone Professor of Irish Studies and English at University of Missouri—St. Louis and is a past president of the American Conference for Irish Studies.

Wall regularly publishes poetry, short fiction, and reviews in The Review of Contemporary Fiction, Washington Post Book World, The Chicago Tribune, The Irish Times, Criticism, Eire-Ireland, Shenandoah, Irish Herald, New Hibernia Review, and the Irish Literary Supplement.

”It is both an honor and a thrill to be selected as the Heimbold Chair for 2014. I am excited at the prospect of being part of the Villanova community,” Wall said.

 “As an immigrant myself, I am always interested in how writers write about immigration and how readers respond to such work. Always, I like to listen carefully to what students have to say,” he added.

The Charles A. Heimbold, Jr. Chair of Irish Studies, inaugurated in 2000, has become one of the most prestigious Irish Studies positions in the United States. Former holders of the Heimbold Chair include luminaries from the Irish arts including Peter Fallon, Nuala NiDhomhnaill, Eamon Greenan, Marina Carr, Vona Groarke, Conor O’Callaghan, Michael Coady, Sebastian Barry, Justin Quinn and Claire Keegan, Gerald Dawe, John McAuliffe, Moya Cannon, Hugh Hamilton and Mary O’Malley.

Villanova’s Irish Studies program, approaching its 35th anniversary, is one of the nation’s oldest and largest undergraduate curriculums of its type.  For more information about Villanova’s Irish Studies Program, contact Dr. Joseph Lennon at joseph.lennon@villanova.edu

About Villanova University: Since 1842, Villanova University’s Augustinian Catholic intellectual tradition has been the cornerstone of an academic community in which students learn to think critically, act compassionately and succeed while serving others. There are more than 10,000 undergraduate, graduate and law students in the University's five colleges – the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, the Villanova School of Business, the College of Engineering, the College of Nursing and the Villanova University School of Law. As students grow intellectually, Villanova prepares them to become ethical leaders who create positive change everywhere life takes them.