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Dr William Rupp

Contact details

Email: w dot h dot rupp at warwick dot ac dot uk
Room: R3.17 (Ramphal Building)

Office hours (term time):

Please book a slot or come to my office at the times below:

Assistant Professor

Senior Tutor (School for Cross-faculty Studies)
Adjustments and Disabilities Officer (Liberal Arts)
Widening Participation Lead (Liberal Arts)


Hon.BA in History and Political Science (New College, University of Toronto); MA in History (Wilfrid Laurier University); PhD in History (University of Warwick); Postgraduate Award in Technology Enhanced Learning (University of Warwick).

Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts.

Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.


I have a varied professional background that encompasses a range of work and interests from arts philanthropy, community schools engagement, to pedagogy in higher education.

I joined the Warwick community in 2006 as a postgraduate student. Since completing my PhD I have been employed here in a variety of roles. These have included working as part of Warwick's outreach and widening participation initiatives, including managing UniTracks, the University's national network for gifted and talented school students. My work has also included supporting Warwick's international partnership development, particularly through involvement with the Monash-Warwick Alliance. Between 2015 and 2021 I was a member of the Academic Development Centre, working specifically to help support the University’s community of postgraduate teachers.

Student support and wellbeing are areas of particular interest to me. To this end, I was a member of Warwick's Residential Life Team between 2015 and 2022. I am also a community governor at King Edward VI College in Nuneaton.

Research and Teaching Interests

Listen to me talk about my ongoing research!Link opens in a new window

At my heart, I am an historical researcher focusing on travel and identity creation in 18th century Britain. In an era of devolution where the very concept of a 'British' state is being questioned it is easy to overlook how this entity and identity came to be. Standard historical approaches favour a narrative that the English, Scottish, and Welsh (and sometimes the Irish) started to come together from the early 1700s to form a Protestant and Atlantic-focused state in opposition to a Europe dominated by the Catholic church. As a result, the British state was able to not only survive but thrive in a hostile global environment. What this outlook does not encompass, however, is the important role that individual English, Scottish, Welsh, and Irish citizens played in this process. 'Sub-national' identities were, and remain to this day, strong identifiers and important influences in national politics. My research, particularly through the use of travel diaries (including those of John Byng, who wrote extensively of his journeys across England and Wales in the 1780s and 1790s), demonstrates that sub-nationalities were critical to the creation, adoption, and legitimisation of 'Britain'. Nevertheless, these have been largely excluded from such discussions. My current writing, therefore, seeks to reinterpret the creation narrative of the British state to include sub-nationalities. These interpretations are complicated by the often unspoken and purposely overlooked economic basis for this Britain, built as it was on enslavement, military expansionism, and exploitation of non-European populations and geographies.

More generally, I have a significant interest in travel writing as a means of understanding difference. Drawing on the work of New Historicists such as Stephen Greenblatt, the Annales School, and cultural historians such as Natalie Zemon Davis, I am keen on looking at how both cultural and personal identities change and modify when confronted with difference. Doing so, I believe, helps us understand the extent and depth of our own boundaries and how (and why) intercultural conflict can occur.

Finally, teaching, and especially pedagogy (that is, the study of how we learn and the methods and practices of how and why we teach), is an important area of focus for me.


  • IP122: Revolution!
  • IP226/326: The Liquid Continent
  • IP901: Creating Knowledge for Change: Foundations of Transdisciplinary Research
  • Undergraduate dissertation supervisor



  • William H. Rupp. Books in Brooks and Sermons in Stones? The Search for England in the Late Eighteenth Century. Manuscript in preparation; expected publication date 2026.
  • --------- 'Illuminating local politics; Public utilities and social control in late-Victorian Ontario, Canada.' Article under review.
  • Assistant editor/online editor. The European World 1500-1800; An Introduction to Early Modern History. Beat Kümin (ed). 4th edition. London: Routledge, 2023. (1st edition 2009, 2nd edition 2014, 3rd edition 2018)
  • Nigel Thrift, Adam Tickell, Steve Woolgar, and William Rupp (eds.). Globalization in Practice. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2014.

General readership

  • William H. Rupp. 'Constructing constructive alignment, the benefits of a hands-on approach'. SEDA blog (, 2019.
  • ---------- 'How history is taught at university'. Modern History Review 21, 3 (February 2019): 14-15.
  • ---------- Cryfield Grange: A Brief History. Coventry: University of Warwick, 2009.
  • ---------- 'Travels with Mr Byng'. In Vision 2015: The International Dimension. Coventry: University of Warwick, 2009.
  • ---------- Cryfield Farmhouse: A Brief History. Coventry: University of Warwick, 2007.