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Television: History & Analysis - TFT00025C

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  • Department: Theatre, Film, Television and Interactive Media
  • Module co-ordinator: Prof. Kristyn Gorton
  • Credit value: 20 credits
  • Credit level: C
  • Academic year of delivery: 2020-21

Module summary

The module is wide-ranging in terms of its historical and analytical scope, offering a general introduction to the study of the medium. The module examines the specificity of television as an industry, an artistic medium and a cultural form, exploring issues of television aesthetics, textuality, genre, institution, social context and audience engagement. The television texts studied will span a number of genres and forms, from those perceived as 'ordinary' and ‘everyday’ (such as soap operas and reality television) to those perceived as ‘serious’ or 'quality' (such as ‘single plays’ and literary adaptations).  

Module will run

Occurrence Teaching cycle
A Autumn Term 2020-21 to Spring Term 2020-21

Module aims

The aims of the module are:

  • to acquaint students with a broad outline of television history (with a particular focus on British and American contexts)
  • to provide a more detailed understanding of moments of significant aesthetic, social, industrial and technological change in the development of television
  • to introduce the basic concepts, methods and terminology necessary for the understanding and systematic analysis of television as a distinct medium

Module learning outcomes

By the end of the module students will be expected

  • to have a broad familiarity with the history of television from its birth as a technology in the 1920s to its contemporary manifestations as a mass medium over a number of different platforms
  • to have a more detailed understanding of the ways in which television is studied as both an industry and a cultural form
  • to be familiar with significant concepts and debates within Television Studies as they emerged (and continue to emerge) at key points of change in television history
  • to be able to draw upon and apply a range of conceptual resources for the analysis of television

Assessment

Task Length % of module mark
Essay/coursework
3000 Word Essay
N/A 100

Special assessment rules

None

Additional assessment information

In-class exercises on research methods and essay writing skills will be embedded across the module.

Reassessment

Task Length % of module mark
Essay/coursework
3000 Word Essay
N/A 100

Module feedback

Students will receive written feedback on all assessments and reassessments.

Indicative reading

Assigned readings will be made available on a week by week basis. The key texts throughout the module will be:

  • Jonathan Bignell, An Introduction to Television Studies. Third Edition. London: Routledge, 2012
  • Christine Geraghty and Lusted, David The Television Studies Book. London: Arnold, 1999
  • Jonathan Gray and Amanda D. Lotz, Television Studies, London: Polity, 2012
  • Robert Allen and Annette Hill, The Television Studies Reader, London: Routledge, 2004
  • Lez Cooke, British Television Drama: A History, London: BFI, 2003
  • Catherine Johnson and Rob Turnock, ITV Cultures ITV Cultures: Independent Television over 50 years, Maidenhead: Open University Press 2005
  • Paddy Scannell, Radio, Television and Modern Life, Oxford: Blackwell, 1996
  • Toby Miller, Television Studies: The Basics London: Routledge, 2010
  • John Caughie, Television Drama: Realism,Modernism and British Culture, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2000
  • Glen Creeber and John Tulloch (ed) The Television Genre Book, London: BFI, 2008
  • Glen Creeber (ed) Tele-Visions: An Introduction to Studying Television, London: BFI, 2006
  • John T. Caldwell, Televisuality: Style, Crisis and Authority in American Television, New Brunswick, New Jersey: Rutgers University Press, 1995
  • Su Holmes and Deborah Jermyn (eds) Understanding Reality Television London: Routledge, 2004
  • Graeme Turner and Jinna Tay (eds) Television Studies After TV: Understanding Television in the Post-Broadcast Era London: Routledge, 2009
  • James Bennett and Niki Strange (eds) Television as Digital Media, London: Duke University Press, 2011
  • Charlotte Brunsdon, Screen Tastes: Soap Opera to Satellite Dishes, London: Routledge, 1997
  • Marc Leverette, Brian L. Ott and Cara Louise Buckley (eds) It s Not TV:Watching HBO in the Post-television Era London: Routledge, 2008
  • JanetMcCabe and KimAkass (eds) Quality TV: Contemporary American Television and 29 Beyond, London: I.B. Tauris, 2010
  • Horace Newcomb (Ed.), Television The Critical View, Sixth Edition, Oxford: OUP, 2000
  • Toby Miller Ed., Television Studies, London: BFI, 2002

Other reading will be indicated at appropriate moments during the module.

 



The information on this page is indicative of the module that is currently on offer. The University is constantly exploring ways to enhance and improve its degree programmes and therefore reserves the right to make variations to the content and method of delivery of modules, and to discontinue modules, if such action is reasonably considered to be necessary by the University. Where appropriate, the University will notify and consult with affected students in advance about any changes that are required in line with the University's policy on the Approval of Modifications to Existing Taught Programmes of Study.

Coronavirus (COVID-19): changes to courses

The 2020/21 academic year will start in September. We aim to deliver as much face-to-face teaching as we can, supported by high quality online alternatives where we must.

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