Loyola University Chicago

Department of English


Virginia Lee Strain

Title/s:  Associate Professor

Specialty Area: Early modern literature and legal culture; law and literature

Office #:  Crown Center 417

Phone: 82787



"On Compromise and Being Compromised in A Midsummer Night's Dream." Valparaiso University, Christ College Symposium on "What is Justice?" January 13, 2016. 

Mellon Visiting Assistant Professorship, Vanderbilt University (2011-12)

Mellon Postdoctoral Teaching Fellowship, Washington University in St. Louis (2010-11)

Research Assistantship, University of Manitoba Institute for the Humanities (2010)

Huntington Library Short-term Fellowship (2009)


B.A., Hons. (2001), M.A. (2002), Ph.D. (2011), University of Toronto

Research Interests

Early modern dramatic and non-dramatic literature; early modern legal culture and literature; Shakespeare and law; law and literature


The Shakespeare Association of America’s J. Leeds Barroll Dissertation Prize (2011)

Selected Publications

Recent Publications: 

“Shakespeare’s Living Law: Theatrical, Lyrical, and Legal Practice.” Literature Compass, vol.12, no. 6, 2015, pp. 249-261. 

“The Ensnared Subject and the General Pardon Statute in Late Elizabethan Literature.” Taking Exception to the Law: Materializing Injustice in Early Modern English Literature. Edited by Don Beecher et al. University of Toronto Press, 2015, pp. 100-119. 

The Winter’s Tale and the Oracle of the Law.” English Literary History, vol. 78, no. 3, 2011, pp. 557-584. 


"Legal Reform and 2 Henry IV.” The Oxford Handbook of English Law and Literature, 1500-1700. Edited by Lorna Hutson and Bradin Cormack. Oxford University Press. Projected publication date: 2015. 

"Punitive and Preventive Justice in Measure for Measure." Shakespeare and Judgment. Edited by Kevin Curran. University of Edinburgh Press. Projected publication date: 2015.

Perfecting the Law: Literature and Law Reform in the Age of Shakespeare. Book project.