In this Book

summary
Featuring ordinary people, celebrities, game shows, hidden cameras, everyday situations, and humorous or dramatic situations, reality TV is one of the fastest growing and important popular culture trends of the past decade, with roots reaching back to the days of radio. The Tube Has Spoken provides an analysis of the growing phenomenon of reality TV, its evolution as a genre, and how it has been shaped by cultural history. This collection of essays looks at a wide spectrum of shows airing from the 1950s to the present, addressing some of the most popular programs including Alan Funt’s Candid Camera, Big Brother, Wife Swap, Kid Nation, and The Biggest Loser. It offers both a multidisciplinary approach and a cross-cultural perspective, considering Australian, Canadian, British, and American programs. In addition, the book explores how popular culture shapes modern western values; for example, both An American Family and its British counterpart, The Family, showcase the decline of the nuclear family in response to materialistic pressures and the modern ethos of individualism. This collection highlights how reality TV has altered the tastes and values of audiences in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. It analyzes how reality TV programs reflect the tensions between the individual and the community, the transformative power of technology, the creation of the celebrity, and the breakdown of public and private spheres.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
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  1. Title Page, Copyright
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  1. Contents
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  1. Foreword
  2. pp. vii-viii
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  1. Acknowledgments
  2. pp. ix-x
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  1. Introduction
  2. pp. 1-8
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  1. Part I: Reality TV as Social Experiment
  2. p. 9
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  1. Citizen Funt: Surveillance as Cold War Entertainment
  2. pp. 11-26
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  1. From Social Experiment to Postmodern Joke: Big Brother and the Progressive Construction of Celebrity
  2. pp. 27-46
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  1. From the Kitchen to 10 Downing Street: Jamie’s School Dinners and the Politics of Reality Cooking
  2. pp. 47-64
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  1. The Patriotic American Is a Thin American: Fatness National Identity in The Biggest Loser
  2. pp. 65-80
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  1. Part II: Class, Gender, and Reimaging of Family Life
  2. p. 81
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  1. Disillusionment, Divorce, and the Destruction of the American Dream: An American Family and the Rise of Reality TV
  2. pp. 83-97
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  1. “The television audience cannot be expected to bear too much reality”: The Family and Reality TV
  2. pp. 98-122
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  1. Reality TV and the American Family
  2. pp. 123-144
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  1. Shopping, Makeovers, and Nationhood: Reality TV and Women’s Programming in Canada
  2. pp. 145-170
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  1. Babes in Bonanza Land: Kid Nation, Commodification, and the Death of Play
  2. pp. 171-194
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  1. Part III: Reality TV and the Living History Experiment
  2. p. 195
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  1. “A Storybook Every Day”: Fiction and History in the Channel 4/PBS House Series
  2. pp. 197-216
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  1. “What about giving us a real version of Australian history?”: Identity, Ethics, and Historical Understanding in Reality History TV
  2. pp. 217-235
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  1. Living History in Documentary Practice: The Making of The Colony
  2. pp. 236-256
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  1. Contributors
  2. pp. 257-260
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  1. Index
  2. pp. 261-275
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Additional Information

ISBN
9780813129419
Related ISBN
9780813125534
MARC Record
OCLC
696084281
Pages
275
Launched on MUSE
2012-01-01
Language
English
Open Access
No
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