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Television and Common Knowledge considers how television can facilitate a well-informed citizenship in a fragmented modern society. The contributors investigate television's role as a means of producing and disseminating knowledge.
`Most cultural analysis focuses on the spectacular and the unusual. Frances Bonner has done us a great service by insisting on - and demonstrating - the importance of everyday TV. Ordinary Television breaks genuinely new ground' - Toby Miller, New York University In this book, Frances Bonner provides a distinctive angle on a key area of research and teaching across media and cultural studies - the content of television and the relations between television genres and audiences. Hitherto most books on television have focused on drama, or news and current affairs. In other words, they tend to ignore 'ordinary' television - lifestyle programmes and 'reality TV', just the sort of programmes which increasing dominate the schedules. In Ordinary Television, Frances Bonner makes a distinctive argument for regarding these disparate shows as a whole. By examining a substantial range of these programmes, Frances Bonner uncovers their shared characteristics, especially through a consideration of the dominant and disguised discources which pervade them. In addition, the comparative nature of her study enables the author to launch a powerful critique of conventional theories in relation to the globalization of television. This book will be invaluable reading for anyone interested in television and the media in general.
Using our favourite Springfield family as a case study, Watching with The Simpsons examines the textual and social role of parody in offering critical commentary on other television programs and genres. Jonathan Gray brings together textual theory, discussions of television and the public sphere, and ideas of parody and comedy. Including primary audience research, it focuses on how The Simpsons has been able to talk back to three of television’s key genres - the sitcom, adverts and the news - and on how it holds the potential to short-circuit these genre’s meanings, power, and effects by provoking reinterpretations and offering more media literate recontextualizations. Examining television and media studies theory, the text of The Simpsons, and the show’s audience, Gray attempts to fully situate the show’s parody and humour within the lived realities of its audiences. In doing so, he further explores the possibilities for popular entertainment television to discuss issues of political and social importance. A must read for any student of media studies.
Television Studies: The Key Concepts is the definitive reference guide to an area of rapidly expanding academic interest. Among those aspects of television studies covered in this comprehensive and up-to-date guide are: theoretical perspectives which have shaped the study of television - Marxism; semiology; feminism concepts which have shaped the study of television - narrative; representation; bias television genres - soap opera; news; science fiction methods used for understanding television - content analysis; audience research relevant social, economic and political phenomena - ownership; social policy.
What does it mean to live in the Communication Age? What has happened to culture in the Communication Age? What is the nature of culture today? Culture in the Communication Age brings together some of the world's leading thinkers from a range of academic disciplines to discuss what 'culture' means in the modern era. They describe key features of cultural life in the 'communication age', and consider the cultural implications of the rise of global communication, mass media, information technology, and popular culture. Individual chapters consider: * Cultures of the mind * Rethinking culture in a global context * Re-thinking Culture, from 'ways of life' to 'lifestyle' * Gender and Culture * Popular Culture and Media Spectacles * Visual Culture * Star Culture * Computers, the Internet and Virtual Cultures * Superculture in the Communication Age
Culture After Humanism asks what happens to the authority of traditional western modes of thought in the wake of postmodernist theories of language and identity. Drawing on examples from music, architecture, literature, philosophy and art, Iain Chambers investigates moments of tension, interruptions which transform our perception of the world and test the limits of language, art and technology.
Impossible Bodies investigates issues of ethnicity, gender, and sexuality in contemporary Hollywood. Examining stars from Arnold Schwarzenegger and Clint Eastwood, to Whoopi Goldberg and Jennifer Lopez, Holmlund focuses on actors whose physique or appearance marks them as unusual or exceptional, and yet who occupy key and revealing positions in today's mainstream cinema. Exploring a range of genres and considering both stars and their sidekicks, Holmlund examines ways in which Hollywood accommodates - or doesn't - a variety of 'impossible' bodies, from the 'outrageous' physiques of Dolph Lundgren and Dolly Parton, to the almost-invisible bodies of Asian-Americans, Latinas and older actors.

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