Office: Wood Hall, Rm 333
Areas of Specialty
British Colonial Military History; and War and Society in Europe
Current Research Interests
Japanese Canadian internment during World War Two; the intersection of Irish and Indian nationalism
Roger N. Buckley, Professor of History and the founding Director of the Asian American Studies Institute at the University of Connecticut, was born in New York City. In 1975, he earned a doctorate in British Empire history from McGill University in Montreal.
The focus of Professor Buckley’s research has been war in history with special attention on the British colonial army. His writings have sought to demonstrate that the study of war is more than the examination of conflict. War in history embraces war in all its various aspects: social, cultural, geographic, medical, economic, gender, legal, intellectual, and political, as much as purely military. His scholarly books resulting from this approach are Slaves in Red Coats (Yale University Press, 1979); The Haitian Journal of Lieutenant Howard, 1796-98, edited (University of Tennessee Press, 1985); The Napoleonic War Journal of Captain Thomas Henry Browne, 1807-1816, edited (The Bodley Head/British Army Records Society, 1987); and The British Army in the West Indies: Society and the Military in the Revolutionary Age (University Press of Florida, 1998).
Professor Buckley’s scholarly work informs his effort to employ quality fiction to fill in some of the missing historical record. In “Accommodation and Resistance: Three Who Chose Rebellion,” a recently completed trilogy, Professor Buckley explores the questions of race, gender, culture, nationality, and politics in the British Army of the nineteenth century, through the lives of three British soldiers, each a real historical character: a black African, an Indian Hindu, and an Irish Catholic. The novels of the trilogy are Congo Jack (Pinto Press, 1997), I, Hanuman (Writers Workshop, Kolkatta/Calcutta, India, 2003), and Sepoy O’Connor (Writers Workshop, 2016). Buckley’s interests in Asian American history resulted in the co-edited anthology: Yellow Power – Yellow Soul: The Radical Art of Fred Ho (University of Illinois Press, 2013).
Professor Buckley is also engaged in writing a series of popular fiction novels that focus on current cultural and political questions. The first two works in the series – Fort Gorges, Maine and Gandhi Forever – are complete and are being considered for publication. He is at work on a third work.
Among Professor Buckley’s journal articles/book chapters are “‘Black Man’ … A Microcosm of War and Slavery in the Caribbean,” Jamaican Historical Review, XII (1980): 52-76; “The Frontier in the Jamaican Caricatures of Abraham James,” Yale University Library Gazette, vol. 58, nos. 3-4 (April 1984): 152-162; and “The Admission of Slave Testimony at British Military Courts in the West Indies, 1801-1809,” in Gaspar and Geggus, eds., A Turbulent Time: The French Revolution in the Greater Caribbean (Indian University Press, 1997, pp. 226-250).
Buckley’s latest book is Sepoy O’Connor (Writers Workshop, 2016). He is presently writing a book on the history of the Japanese community in Montreal.
Professor Buckley has received fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities, American Council of Learned Societies, John Carter Brown Library/Brown University, Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, McGill University Sir William Osler Medical Library, University of Connecticut/Provost Research Fellowship.
Courses Regularly Taught
HIST 2402, Europe in the 20th Century
HIST 3812, Modern India
HIST 3101W, History Through Fiction
HIST 3531, Japanese Americans and World War Two
Gandhi: A Life