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American Thought and Culture in the 21st Century$
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Martin Halliwell and Catherine Morley

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780748626014

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: September 2012

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748626014.001.0001

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Television and Digital Media

Television and Digital Media

Chapter:
(p.275) 17. Television and Digital Media
Source:
American Thought and Culture in the 21st Century
Author(s):

Lynn Spigel

Max Dawson

Publisher:
Edinburgh University Press
DOI:10.3366/edinburgh/9780748626014.003.0018

In this chapter, Lynn Spiegel and Max Dawson show how American television remained the central medium not just for entertainment, but for discussion of gender roles, race relations, family life and other major moral and social issues of the day. They examine the new emphasis on taste and lifestyle in network programming, as well as the continuing under-representation of Latino and other ethnic groups on prime-time shows. They also examine the rise of reality television, the development of a new scheduling policy based on the ‘social arrhythmia’ of the 24-hour information economy, and the rising importance of time-shifting by the end of the period. Finally, they argue that viewers now form a part of television audiences that transcend the old boundaries of the nation-state – even though worldwide audiences continue to interpret programmes in the light of their own local contexts and national concerns.

Keywords:   American Television, Network Programming, Ethnic Groups, Reality Television, Time-Shifting, Television Audiences

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