Theatre and Popular Culture in the English Restoration and Eighteenth Century



Year of publication 2021
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Arts

Description The special issue of the Theory and Practice in English Studies journal entitled “Theatre and Popular Culture in the English Restoration and Eighteenth Century” explores the connections between the English Restoration and eighteenth-century theatre and popular culture. Since the early Restoration until the mid-eighteenth century, English theatre culture witnessed a marked shift towards increased commercialization and popularization of theatre, which had great impact on its repertoire, promotion, reception as well as social and political significance. Five research articles address these issues from various angles. The issue offers papers on William Davenant’s Macbeth and the rise of the Restoration actress as a modern celebrity; Restoration prologues and epilogues which testify to the obsolete myth of the “elite” conception of Restoration drama; the interrelatedness of Bocaccio’s Decameron and an English eighteenth-century afterpiece; the dramatization of popular criminal narrative about Jack Sheppard; and a new sentimental interpretation of Juliet in David Garrick’s 1748 production Romeo and Juliet. The issue also contains an academic note on Susanna Centlivre’s The Busybody, an interview with dance historian Moira Goff about London stage dancing, a review of 2021 Red Bull Theatre (NY) production of Hannah Cowley’s The Belle’s Stratagem, a book review on Music and the Benefit Performance in Eighteenth-Century Britain (2020), and a conference report on the second online Restoration symposium from April 2021.
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