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Leslie Ritchie


Leslie Ritchie’s research concerns eighteenth-century English literature’s intersections with media and the performing arts. Ritchie’s most recent book investigates actor-manager David Garrick’s mediation of celebrity by means of newspapers and other media. Her current research examines the newspaper printer and parliamentary reporter William Woodfall’s contributions to the growth of press freedoms. Earlier work considers texts that feature ‘sister arts’ musical-literary-artistic interdisciplinarity and performance. Her research has been supported by SSHRC grants, and fellowships at Harvard’s Theatre Collections and the Folger Shakespeare Library. Ritchie is on the board of the journal Restoration and Eighteenth-Century Theatre Research, and on the international advisory board of the European Research Council-funded project, ‘Theatronomics: The Business of Theatres, 1732-1809.’ She reviews for journals including TDR: The Drama Review; Theatre Research International; Aphra Behn Online: Interactive Journal for Women in the Arts, 1640-1830; 1650-1850: Ideas, Aesthetics, and Inquiries in the Early Modern Era; and Eighteenth-Century Fiction. Ritchie writes: “if you’re in one of my seminars, chances are you’ll be reading widely across a range of genres, and perhaps visiting W.D. Jordan Library to work with our Special Collections of books and pamphlets from the 1700s or the Agnes Etherington Art Centre, to examine prints.”

Research Interests

British literature of the Restoration & eighteenth century; eighteenth-century British newspapers & journalism history; music, popular prints & other performance-related ephemera; David Garrick & London theatre

Selected Publications

David Garrick and the Mediation of Celebrity

Cambridge University Press

Nominated for the Gottschalk Prize for an outstanding historical or critical study of the eighteenth century. An American Library Association Outstanding Academic Title.

  • “Pox on Both Your Houses: The Battle of the Romeos.” Special Issue on Georgian Drama, Eighteenth-Century Fiction. Guest eds. Gillian Russell and Daniel O’Quinn. July 2015. 373-393.
  • “Theatre and Commerce.” The Wiley Encyclopedia of British Literature 1660-1789. Eds. Jack Lynch and Gary Day. London: Blackwell Publishing, 2015.

Forthcoming Publications

  • “Femininity and Foreignness in Colman’s Farce, The Musical Lady.” Eds. Linda Zionkowski and Miriam Hart, Women and Music in Georgian Britain. Forthcoming from Bucknell Press in 2021.
  • “Killing Delane; or, Mimickry and the Anecdota obscura.” English Theatrical Anecdotes, 1660-1800. Eds. Heather Ladd and Leslie Ritchie. Forthcoming from University of Delaware Press in 2021. Co-author of the Introduction and Coda in this same volume.
  • Articles on six novels (all written by musicians and theatre personnel) for The Cambridge Guide to the Eighteenth-Century Novel, 1660-1820. Ed. April London. The novels include Richard Cross’ The Adventures of John LeBrun (1739) and Charles Dibdin’s Henry Hooka (1807); ‘John Piper’ [John Alcock]’s The Life of Miss Fanny Brown (1761); and three anonymous novels, The News-Paper Wedding (1774); The Author and the Two Comedians; Or, The Adopted Child (1802); and A Peep at the Theatres! And Bird’s-Eye Views of Men in the Jubilee Year! A Novel, Satirical, Critical, and Moral . . . By an Old Naval Officer (1812).
  • Editor, David Garrick, Miss in her Teens; or, the Medley of Lovers (1747). In The Broadview Anthology of Restoration and Eighteenth-Century Drama, eds. Diana Solomon and David Weston. Forthcoming from Broadview Press in 2022.

Department of English, Queen's University

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Queen's University is situated on traditional Haudenosaunee and Anishinaabe territory.