Associate Professor Michael McDonnell
BA (Ottawa), DPhil (Oxon)
Room 839 Brennan Building
+61 2 9351 6733
After completing my BA in History and Philosophy at the University of Ottawa, in Canada, I returned to Britain to do a D.Phil at Balliol College, Oxford, where I also taught briefly and served as Junior Dean. I then taught in old south Wales (at the University of Wales, Swansea) before moving to new south Wales to take up a new post in Atlantic History at the University of Sydney, in 2004. I have held short-term research fellowships at the Huntington Library, California, the Thomas Jefferson Memorial Foundation at the International Center for Jefferson Studies at Monticello, Virginia, the David Library of the American Revolution in Pennsylvania, the Virginia Historical Society, and more recently, at the Massachusetts Historical Society. I have also received research awards from Balliol College, the Scouloudi Foundation at the Institute of Historical Research in London and from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, and, in 1997 was appointed a Fellow of the International Visitor Program run by the United States Information Agency in conjunction with the US Embassy in the UK.
- Early and Revolutionary Virginia
- American Revolution
- Native Americans in North America
- Cultural intermediaries and brokers
- Popular politics in the early Atlantic
- Labour, race, class and class struggles in the early Atlantic.
Beyond Borders: Indians, French and Métis and the Making and Unmaking of the Atlantic World
The Revolution in American Life: Memory, History and Nation-Making in the United States from 1776 to Today, with Robert Aldrich, Clare Corbould, and W. Fitzhugh Brundage (University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill)
Distant Empires: French, Métis, and Anishinaabe Communities in the Making and Unmaking of the Atlantic World (forthcoming, New York: Hill and Wang, a Division of Farrar, Strauss, & Giroux).
W. Fitzhugh Brundage, Frances Clarke, Clare Corbould, and Michael A. McDonnell, eds., Remembering the Revolution: Memory, History, and Nation-Making in the US from Independence to the Civil War, (forthcoming, University of Massachusetts Press for their Public History in the Historical Perspective series, 2012).
The Politics of War: Race, Class, and Conflict in Revolutionary Virginia (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press for the Omohundro Institute of Early American History and Culture, Williamsburg, Virginia, 2007). 568 pp.
- Winner of the New South Wales Premier's History Award, 2008
- Runner-up, British Association for American Studies Book Prize, 2007
- Highly Commended, Australian Historical Association, W.K. Hancock Prize, 2008
- Highly Commended, Australian Historical Association, Kay Daniels Prize, 2008
"Class War?: Class Struggles During the American Revolution in Virginia," William and Mary Quarterly 63, no. 2 (April 2006), 305-344
- Winner of the Lester A. Cappon Prize for the annual best-article published in the William and Mary Quarterly for the year 2006.
- Selected for inclusion in the Organization of American Historians (OAH) Best American History Essays 2008 collection
- Excerpted in Major Problems in the History of the American South, eds. Sally G. McMillen, Elizabeth Hayes Turner, Paul D. Escott, and David R. Goldfield (Wadsworth: Cengage Learning, 2012), 175-187.
"Raphael Lemkin as Historian of Genocide in the Americas," with A. Dirk Moses, Journal of Genocide Research 7, no. 4 (Dec. 2005), 501-529.
- reprinted in The Origins of Genocide: Raphael Lemkin as a Historian of Mass Violence, eds., Dominik J. Schaller and Jürgen Zimmerer (London and New York: Routledge, 2009), 57-86.
“A World Turned ‘Topsy Turvy’: Robert Munford, The Patriots, and the Crisis of the Revolution in Virginia,” in William and Mary Quarterly LXI, no. 2 (Apr. 2004), 235-270.
“National Identity and the American War for Independence: A Reappraisal,” Australasian Journal of American Studies 20, no. 1 (July 2001), 3-17.
“Patriot vs Patriot: Social Conflict in Virginia and the Origins of the American Revolution,” with Woody Holton, Journal of American Studies 34, no. 2 (August 2000), 231-256.
“Popular Mobilization and Political Culture in Revolutionary Virginia: The Failure of the Minutemen and the Revolution from Below,” Journal of American History 85, no. 3 (Dec. 1998), 946-981.
“’Other Loyalists’: A Reconsideration of the Black Loyalist Experience in the Era of the American Revolution.” The Southern Historian XVI (Spring 1995), 5-25.
“The Struggle Within: Colonial Politics on the Eve of Independence,” in Edward Gray and Jane Kamensky, eds., Oxford Handbook of the American Revolution (forthcoming, Oxford University Press, 2012).
"War and Nationhood: Founding Myths and Historical Realities, in W. Fitzhugh Brundage, Frances Clarke, Clare Corbould, and Michael A. McDonnell, eds., Remembering the Revolution: Memory, History, and Nation-Making in the US from Independence to the Civil War, (forthcoming, University of Massachusetts Press for their Public History in the Historical Perspective series, 2012).
"Facing Empire: Indigenous Histories in Comparative Perspective" in Kate Fullagar, ed., The Atlantic World in a Pacific Field: Effects and Transformations since the Eighteenth-Century (forthcoming, Cambridge Scholarly Publishing, 2012).
“Jefferson’s Virginia,” in Francis D. Cogliano, ed., A Companion to Thomas Jefferson (Wiley-Blackwell, 2011), 16-31.
“French Colonialism and Indigenous Identities,” in Gregory D. Smithers, Brian D. Behnken, and Brooke N. Newman, Native Diasporas: Indigenous Identities and Settler Colonialism in North America (forthcoming, University of Nebraska Press, 2012).
“’The Spirit of Levelling’: James Cleveland, Edward Wright, and the Struggle for Equality in Revolutionary Virginia,” in Young, Gary B. Nash, and Ray Raphael, eds., Revolutionary Founders: Rebels, Radicals, and Reformers in the Making of a Nation (New York: Alfred A. Knopf and Vintage Anchor Publishing, a division of Random House, Inc., 2011), 135-154.
“Dancing With Shadows: Biography and the Making and Remaking of the Atlantic World,” in Desley Deacon, Penny Russell, and Angela Woollacott, eds., Transnational Lives: Biographies of Global Modernity, 1700-Present (Palgrave Macmillan, 2009), 54-66.
"'Il a Épouse une Sauvagesse': Indian and Métis Persistence Across Imperial and National Borders," in Tony Ballantyne and Antoinette Burton, Moving Subjects: Gender, Mobility, and Intimacy in an Age of Empire (University of Illinois Press, forthcoming, 2007).
“Fit for Common Service?: Class, Race, and Recruitment in Revolutionary Virginia” in John Resch and Walter Sargent, eds., War and Society in the American Revolution: Mobilization and Home Fronts (Dekalb, Ill.: Northern Illinois University Press, 2006), 103-131.
“Paths Not Yet Taken, Voices Not Yet Heard: Rethinking Atlantic History,” in Anne Curthoys and Marilyn Lake, eds., Connected Worlds: History in Transnational Perspective (Canberra: Australian National University Press, 2005), 46-62.
“Republicanism and War,” in Americans at War: Society, Culture, and the Homefront, edited by John P. Resch (Macmillan, 2004).
“Charles-Michel Mouet de Langlade: Warrior, Soldier and Intercultural ‘Window’ on the Sixty Years’ War for the Great Lakes” in David C. Skaggs and Larry Nelson, eds., The Sixty Years’ War for the Great Lakes, 1754-1816 (Michigan State University Press, 2001), 79-104.
“Resistance to the Revolution,” in Jack P. Greene and J.R. Pole, eds., Companion to the American Revolution (London and New York: Blackwell Publishers Ltd., 2000), 342-351.
- HSTY 2662: Atlantic World in the Age of Empire
- HSTY 2663: Natives and Newcomers
- HSTY 2666: American Revolutions
- HSTY 3698: Class Struggles in the Atlantic World
- Colonial America
- Early Native Americans
- Race and Class in the early modern Atlantic
Along with giving numerous international conference papers and organising several complete panels for major historical Conferences such as the Organisation of American Historians, the American Historical Association and the Omohundro Institute for Early American History and Culture, I have also been invited to give papers at Universities around the world including, among others, Oxford, Cambridge, Harvard, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Paris, London, Genoa, William and Mary, and more recently, La Trobe and ANU.
I have also served as Conference Organiser for the British Association of American Studies Annual Conference in 2000, Conference Co-Organiser for a Brunel/Cambridge Early American Colloquium in 1999, and as a Conference Committee Member for the Omohundro Institute for Early American History and Culture Annual Conference, in Glasgow in 2001 and for the Early Americanists in Britain and Ireland Annual Conference in September 2000. In 2008, I co-hosted, with Clare Corbould, Frances Clarke and Stephen Robertson, the biennial Conference of the Australia and New Zealand American Studies Association (ANZASA) here at Sydney.
Over the past few years, I have been invited to serve as referee for the prestigious US National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) Grant Programme, as well as the Guggenheim Foundation, and for various journals and book publishers such as the William and Mary Quarterly, Journal of American Studies, Economic History Review; Labor History and the Australasian Journal of American Studies as well as Blackwell’s and Arnold Press. I have served as Senior Associate Editor of The Southern Historian, Book Review Editor of Borderlines: Studies in American Culture, and been recently elected to the Editorial Board of the internationally renowned Labor History. I have also been elected and served as an Executive Committee Member for the British Association for American Studies (where I also chaired one of the three main sub-committees), and more recently, the Australia and New Zealand American Studies Association. In addition to this, I co-founded and coordinated a new Society for Early Americanists in Britain and Ireland in 1998, an organisation that is thriving at present with an annual funded Conference.