Dr. Elena (Ellie) Woodacre is a Senior Lecturer in Early Modern European History at the University of Winchester who specialises in queenship and royal studies. Ellie has become an evangelist for royal studies as an academic discipline and has been pushing the field of queenship in new directions with her activities in the field and her own research. Her work in promoting royal studies can be seen in her coordination of the ‘Kings & Queens’ conference series, as founder of the Royal Studies Network (www.royalstudiesnetwork.org), Editor-in-Chief of the Royal Studies Journal (www.rsj.winchester.ac.uk) and the editor of two book series–the Gender and Power in the Premodern World series (ARC Humanities Press) and the Lives of Royal Women series (Routledge).
In terms of her own work, her monograph on the regnant queens of Navarre offered new perspectives on the partnership of reigning queens and consort kings and identified various modes of partnership between them. She has also looked at the Mediterranean as a distinctive space for female rule in her edited collection Queenship in the Mediterranean (Palgrave Macmillan, 2013) and in a chapter for Megan Moore’s Gender in the Premodern Mediterranean (ACMRS, 2019). With Carey Fleiner, she has co-edited two volumes which offered a series of case studies on queenship and motherhood for Palgrave Macmillan’s Queenship and Power series and she offered a new take on the “Mechanisms of Monarchy” in The Routledge History of Monarchy (2019), a landmark, extensive collection on rulership for which she was the lead editor. Most recently, she has been driving forward a new global perspective on queenship which can be seen in the edited collection A Companion to Global Queenship (ARC Medieval Press, 2018) and a short work on queens and queenship in a timeless, global sense which is in press with ARC and will be out in 2021.Her other passion, which she shares with other members of Team Queens, is to examine the economic aspects of queenship, particularly their control of lands and resources, which she discovered while researching Joan of Navarre—her biography of this largely overlooked, but fascinating, queen will be out in 2022.
Beyond her research, Ellie enjoys staying active with yoga, running and hiking and sings semi-professionally with The Bridge. She loves to read historical fiction and watch historical films and tv series (largely about queens of course) and also has a deep love of sci-fi and fantasy (where queens often turn up as well). While she grew up largely in California, she has lived in the UK for over two decades and has grown children who live on both sides of ‘the Pond’. Her remaining ‘baby’ is her cat Mr. Theo Muffin, who is well known to the Team Queens crew!