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Dr David Francis Taylor

img_1861.jpgThis is an archived page. I have now moved to the University of Oxford and can be contacted on:


Before joining Warwick in 2014 I spent four years at the University of Toronto, first as an Andrew W. Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow and then as an Assistant Professor. I've held visiting fellowships at the Huntington Library and Cambridge University’s Centre for Research in the Arts, Social Sciences, and Humanities. I'm the author of Theatres of Opposition (OUP, 2012) and co-editor of The Oxford Handbook of the Georgian Theatre (OUP, 2014). In 2013 I was awarded the Polanyi Prize for Literature by the Government of Ontario.

I've appeared on BBC Radio 3's Free Thinking programme talking about Shakespeare and political cartoons, and I've published short articles about satire and caricature on the Guardian, The Conversation, and I've also written about Brexit for the LA Review of Books.

Research interests

I specialize in British literature and culture of the long eighteenth century. My research interests include:

  • theatre
  • satire and parody
  • the relationship between literary and visual cultures
  • spectatorship
  • the cultural history of Shakespeare
  • the construction of literary history

Current projects

Caricature, Parody, and Literary History

My current work is especially concerned with the relationship between literature and visual culture and also with finding new ways to map the presence and use of "literary" texts within the field of parliamentary politics. My new book – The Politics of Parody: A Literary History of Caricature, 1760-1830 (coming out with Yale University Press in 2018) – looks at the many political parodies of literary texts, by the likes of Shakespeare and Milton, in Georgian satirical prints. On the one hand, the book contends that such images allow us to track the fundamental importance of literary narratives, characters, and tropes to the workings and public legibility of parliamentary political culture in the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. On the other hand, and through its very methodology, the book offers a challenge to literary history as it is conventionally constructed and insists that we have much to learn by attending to materials and archives usually considered to be well beyond the discipline's purview.

Shakespearean political cartoons across 250 years

In conjunction with the above book project I'm curating an exhibition with the RSC entitled "Draw New Mischief: 250 years of Shakespeare and Political Cartoons". This runs from 25th February to October 2017 in the PACCAR Gallery of the Royal Shakespeare Theare, Stratford-upon-Avon. For a selection of some of the cartoons on display see my gallery article in the Guardian.

The Dramatic Works of Joseph Addison

I'm beginning work on an edition of the dramatic works of Joseph Addison (under contract with Oxford University Press), which will include the first full critical edition of Cato. In 2017-18 I will be a Katherine F. Pantzer Jr. Fellow in Descriptive Bibliography at the Houghton Library, Harvard University, where I'll be undertaking research for this edition.


I'd be happy to supervise research projects concerned with the intersection of literature and visual culture, the shape of literary history, or more generally with theatre, satire, or parody in the period.

Projects by recent/current doctoral students include:

  • The politics of the comic in the 1790s
  • Forms of belonging in Jane Austen
  • Religion on the Restoration stage

Administrative roles

  • Director of Graduate Studies

Recent publications

For a complete list of publications see here.


  • MA, Hons. (St. Andrews)
  • MPhil (Cambridge)
  • PhD (Cambridge)

Office hours