Bryan Giemza, Ph.D.
For the second year running, Randolph-Macon College English Professor Bryan Giemza,
Ph.D., will be a featured speaker at the 18th annual Savannah Irish Festival, which
will be held February 12-14, 2010 at the Savannah Civic Center in Savannah, Georgia.
Giemza will discuss his forthcoming study of Irish writers of the American South,
including some of the key figures, such as Kate (O’Flaherty) Chopin, Margaret Mitchell
and John Kennedy Toole. He will pay particular attention to Flannery O’Connor’s
connections to Savannah. Giemza plans on submitting his completed manuscript to
LSU Press at the end of January Term.
Giemza wrote many entries for Southern Writers: A New Biographical Dictionary
(Louisiana State University Press, 2006), which he edited with Joseph Flora
and Amber Vogel of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. The book won
the 2006 Jules and Frances Landry Award, which is given to the book that is considered
the most outstanding achievement in southern studies. Southern Writers
was also nominated for the American Library Association Outstanding Reference Sources
Giemza is also the co-author of Poet of the Lost Cause: A Life of Father Ryan
(University of Tennessee Press, 2008), which he wrote with Don Beagle of Belmont
Abbey College. The book was nominated for the Lincoln, McClemore and Jefferson Davis
Prizes. The book review of Poet of the Lost Cause in The Journal of Southern
History suggested that the “highly readable volume” should be read “by
anyone interested in the history of the Civil War, the Lost Cause, the experiences
of the Irish in the South, southern Catholicism or southern literary history.” Religious
Studies Review called it “a welcome addition to the increasing interest
in examining the nexus between religion and the Civil War,” providing students “in
history, literature and religious studies a comprehensive account of a complex individual”
in “a superior study.”
Giemza joined the faculty at Randolph-Macon College in 2008. He earned his B.A.
at the University of Notre Dame and his J.D., M.A. and Ph.D. at the University of
North Carolina at Chapel Hill.