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Waseem Ahmed

Waseem’s research interests are in seventeenth century British political history broadly defined with his thesis investigating popular politics in 1650s England. This work is funded by UCL’s Research Opportunity Scholarship, in partnership with the Windsor Fellowship. 

Waseem’s thesis investigates how non-elite men and women sought to reconcile themselves to the successive political regimes of the 1650s and involves scrutinising how people collaborated and demonstrated loyalty to the state through popular political processes and quotidian practices in their local communities. These quotidian practices include informing, petitioning, supporting pro-regime candidates in elections, co-operation of local government, support for the church and moral reform, and statements of loyalty in legal settings.  His project draws from post-revisionist scholarship of the English Revolution as well as Ethan Shagan’s conceptualisation of ‘collaboration’ and Rachel Weil’s ideas on trust. By reconceptualising the experiences of ordinary people in the 1650s and studying how people sought to conform to new regimes, it will allow us to overcome a ‘deference/resistance paradigm’ that has dominated studies of the period which simultaneously: stifles the political agency of ordinary people, exaggerates popular hostility towards the state, and portrays the Restoration of Charles II as inevitable. 

Waseem holds a BA in History (I:I) from the University of Birmingham where his undergraduate dissertation investigated divisions among Cromwellians during Oliver Cromwell’s Protectorate. He then graduated with an MA (Distinction) in Early Modern History from University of Birmingham where his thesis analysed how members of the Cromwellian Protectorate were able to accommodate themselves to the Restoration government of Charles II. 

PhD

Supervisor: Professor Jason Peacey (Primary Supervisor) and Dr Ed Legon (Secondary Supervisor)
Working title: Everyday Politics in Revolutionary England, 1649-1660
Expected completion date: 2025

Scholarships and Prizes

  • UCL Research Opportunity Scholarship to pursue PhD research (2021-2024) 
  • University of Birmingham Edna Pearson Studentship for Early Modern History MA (2020-2021)
  • University of Birmingham Masters Scholarship for Early Modern History MA (2020-2021)

Conference Papers and Seminars 

  • What is The MHR?, British Society for History of Science, April 2022 
  • The Experience of Accommodation: ‘Monarchical Cromwellians and the Restoration of Charles II’, Politics and People Conference, April 2022 
  • Conceptualising Loyalty in the English Republic, Northern Early Modern Network, April 2022 
  • Elevated Pitches session, IHR History Lab, December 2020

Publications 

  • Book review of Imogen Peck, ‘Recollection in the Republics: Memories of the British Civil Wars, 1649-1659 (Oxford, 2021)’, Journal of British Studies, 62:4 (Forthcoming). 
  • Thought piece of Stewart Fergusson, ‘Coventry's Godly Magistrate: Robert Beake (1620-1708) soldier, mayor and MP’, University of Birmingham Centre for West Midlands History Blog, Forthcoming
  • ‘Wenceslaus Hollar’s engraving of Strafford’s Execution’, and ‘Statue of Oliver Cromwell as Hercules’ in Andre Hopper (ed.), Civil Wars in 100 Objects (Birmingham, 2023). 
  • Shakespeare's Richard II - Myth or Reality? The Shakespeare Birthplace Trust Blog, 06/08/2018
  • Shakespeare’s Richard III - Myth or Reality? The Shakespeare Birthplace Trust Blog, 30/07/2018

Teaching 

  • Encountering the Americas: Key Themes and Concepts (AMER0038) 2022/2023  (1st Year undergraduates, 2 weekly seminar classes and 1 lecture)

Other professional activities 

  • Editorial Board, Midlands History (November 2022-Present) 
  • Chair, Institute of Historical Research History Lab (September 2022-Present) 
  • Co-Conference convenor, Christopher Hill and the English Revolution: 50 years after The World Turned Upside Down, Institute of Historical Research (4th February 2023). 
  • Co-Conference convenor, Institute of Historical Research History Lab Histories in Crisis (September 2021-September 2022)
  • Lead Editor, The Midlands Historical Review (June 2021-September 2022)
  • Assistant Editor, The Midlands Historical Review (February 2021-June 2021)
  • Speech at virtual undergraduate Graduation Ceremony, University of Birmingham (2020)
  • Personal Skills Award (Advanced), University of Birmingham (2018-2019) 
  • Member of Royal Historical Society (Postgraduate), Cromwell Association, International John Bunyan Society