Understanding television is a multi-faceted process. It involves institutional analysis of the organizations that produce television programming, interpretation of particular program forms that circulate across space and over time, as well as ethnographic perspectives on viewing practices. This course focuses on US commercial television, with attention to both broadcast and cable industries, and to different moments in the production-text-reception cycle. An overarching concern is to explore how the field of television studies has responded to ongoing changes in the production, distribution, and reception of television. We will critically evaluate an analytic distinction between television and film that initially shaped television studies and we will examine particular institutional and programming developments that have undermined clear-cut economic or aesthetic distinctions between media. Topics include: the "glance theory"! of television viewing; the production of "liveness"; genre and narrative in film and television; the relation of media conglomerization to audience fragmentation or niche marketing; different incarnations of "quality" television and the relations between them; the split between "quality" and "reality" programming in contemporary network television; television fandom as an institutional, textual, and audience phenomenon.
COURSE FORMAT: Discussion
Level: UGRD Credit: 1 Gen Ed Area Dept: SBS ANTH Grading Mode: Graded
Prerequisites: NONE Links to Web Resources For This Course.
Last Updated on MAR-30-2006
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