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William Dusinberre: In memoriam

William Dusinberre: a Memoir

William Dusinberre

William Dusinberre, who died recently at the venerable age of 92, was a founding member of the History Department in 1965 and taught at Warwick for more than 30 years. Colleagues remember him here.

I was very sorry to hear of Bill Dusinberre’s death. I had met Bill several times at conferences while I was a graduate student at Cambridge, and then I was fortunate enough to be appointed as his replacement at Warwick on his retirement in 1996. Bill took the time to meet with me after my appointment and left several shelf-loads of books that proved very helpful in my formative years as an academic. His were big shoes to fill, since although I didn’t replicate exactly what he had taught, I was well aware that the teaching of race and slavery in nineteenth century America had a very long history at Warwick. Not long after his retirement Bill published “Them Dark Days” a visceral account of slavery in coastal Georgia and South Carolina, and we later had some very memorable in-depth conversations about the themes he raised in that book. He was always such a wonderfully warm colleague, generous with his time, and very happy to discuss research matters in a probing manner. Where we differed on interpretations and analyses he was always keen to quiz me on why I had a different view, but in a kind and thoughtful way. Bill had a long career, and a very productive retirement - publishing 3 monographs between 1996 and 2009, one that we might all aspire to!

Tim Lockley, Head of Department