Thomas Flanagan (writer)

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Thomas Flanagan (November 5, 1923 – March 21, 2002) was an American university professor and novelist. He was born in Greenwich, Connecticut. His father was a dentist, his mother a homemaker. All four of his grandparents had come to the United States from County Fermanagh, Ireland. He served in the United States Army during World War II. He graduated from Amherst College in 1945. He married Jean Parker, a nurse, in 1949. They had two daughters, Caitlin and Ellen. He received his Master of Arts and Doctor of Philosophy degrees from Columbia University. From 1960 to 1978 he was Professor of English Literature at the University of California at Berkeley, specializing in Irish literature. He was a tenured Full Professor in the English Department at the State University of New York at Stony Brook until his retirement. He and his wife spent much of their time in Ireland. They lived in East Setauket, Long Island.

Flanagan was also a successful novelist. His first novel, The year of the French, won the National Book Critics Award for fiction in 1979 and was adapted into a TV series, which was broadcast in Ireland in 1982.[1] He died in 2002 at the age of 78 in Berkeley.

His historical novels are:

The Archives and Special Collections at Amherst College holds his papers.


  1. ^ Guy Beiner, "The Decline and Rebirth of 'Folk Memory': Remembering 'The Year of the French' in the Late Twentieth Century", Éire - Ireland, 38, no. 3-4 (2003), 7-32.

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