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David Garrick and the Mediation of Celebrity


  • Date Published: January 2019
  • availability: In stock
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9781108475877

£ 75.00

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About the Authors
  • What happens when an actor owns shares in the stage on which he performs and the newspapers that review his performances? Celebrity that lasts over 240 years. From 1741, David Garrick dominated the London theatre world as the progenitor of a new 'natural' style of acting. From 1747 to 1776, he was a part-owner and manager of Drury Lane, controlling most aspects of the theatre's life. In a spectacular foreshadowing of today's media convergences, he also owned shares in papers including the St James's Chronicle and the Public Advertiser, which advertised and reviewed Drury Lane's theatrical productions. This book explores the nearly inconceivable level of cultural power generated by Garrick's entrepreneurial manufacture and mediation of his own celebrity. Using new technologies and extensive archival research, this book uncovers fresh material concerning Garrick's ownership and manipulation of the media, offering timely reflections for theatre history and media studies.

    • Proposes a new interpretation of David Garrick as an entrepreneurial manufacturer of his own celebrity, and views celebrity as the product of iterative media exposure
    • Uses recent technologies, databases, and quantitative research, as well as archival materials and rare sources
    • Reveals previously anonymous publicity writing and theatrical criticism by David Garrick
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'There is much new material here - thanks to Ritchie's expert mining of manuscript and archival materials - for theater historians and scholars of media. Fine illustrations; full bibliography … Highly recommended.' E. D. Hill, Choice

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    Product details

    • Date Published: January 2019
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9781108475877
    • length: 312 pages
    • dimensions: 235 x 158 x 19 mm
    • weight: 0.64kg
    • contains: 11 b/w illus. 3 tables
    • availability: In stock
  • Table of Contents

    1. A view of London's mediascape, circa 1741–1776
    2. Proofs: Garrick's involvement in the mediascape
    3. Advertising and brand Garrick: infinite variety
    4. A short history of negative publicity
    5. Prompting, inside and outside the theatre
    Conclusion: Garrick re-collected.

  • Author

    Leslie Ritchie, Queen's University, Ontario
    Leslie Ritchie is Associate Professor of English Literature at Queen's University, Ontario. She is the recipient of a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada grant and has received fellowships at the Houghton Library, Harvard, and the Folger Shakespeare Library for her work on David Garrick. Ritchie's previous work includes Women Writing Music in Late Eighteenth-Century England (2008).

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