Soap Opera

Soap Opera

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Description

The soap opera is a major form of media art and popular culture. Revered and reviled by fans and critics, its history spans and reflects social change and plays a vital role in the development of broadcasting. This book traces the genre from its beginnings on American radio in the 1930s to the international television genre it has become today. While concentrating on British soap operas, it also discusses the influence of their American and Australian counterparts.







This is the first book to consider the soap opera within the economy of broadcasting; it includes a chapter based on interviews with leading broadcasting executives who give their analysis of the importance of the soap opera to their industry. The perspective of television producers as well as the views of audiences are also taken into account.





Accessibly written, Soap Opera links the genre to both its media and its literary heritage, and argues that soap operas cross international boundaries through the universal appeal of their characters and their stories. It will be of particular interest to students of media and cultural studies, literary studies, sociology and television production courses, as well as to professionals in the television industry.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 240 pages
  • 152 x 228 x 16mm | 359.99g
  • Oxford, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 0745626556
  • 9780745626550
  • 1,615,540

Back cover copy

The soap opera is a major form of media art and popular culture.Revered and reviled by fans and critics, its history spans andreflects social change and plays a vital role in the development ofbroadcasting. This book traces the genre from its beginnings onAmerican radio in the 1930s to the international television genreit has become today. While concentrating on British soap operas, italso discusses the influence of their American and Australiancounterparts.



This is the first book to consider the soap opera within theeconomy of broadcasting; it includes a chapter based on interviewswith leading broadcasting executives who give their analysis of theimportance of the soap opera to their industry. The perspective oftelevision producers as well as the views of audiences are alsotaken into account.


Accessibly written, Soap Opera links the genre to bothits media and its literary heritage, and argues that soap operascross international boundaries through the universal appeal oftheir characters and their stories. It will be of particularinterest to students of media and cultural studies, literarystudies, sociology and television production courses, as well as toprofessionals in the television industry.
show more

Table of contents

Acknowledgements.
Preface: Why Soap Opera?.


Introduction: History and Theories.


Part I: The Soap Business.


1. Soap Opera and the Broadcasting Industry.


2. Elements of Production: Features of the Form.


Part II: The Content of Soap Operas.


3. Soap Stars: Actors and Icons.


4. Soap Opera and Everyday Life: Decades of Domestic Drama.


5. The Big Issues.


Part III: Soap Opera and its Audiences.


6. A Universal Form.


7. The Cultural History of Soap Opera and the Audience.


References.


Index
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Review quote

"This book achieves what media studies researchers have spent twodecades striving for: a comprehensive study for a television textplus on in-depth account of the audience's relation to thetext, solidly grounded in empirical evidence, and in the context ofthe economics of broadcasting. It is the best book I've everread about soap opera, and one of the best I've ever readabout television."
Ellen Seiter, University of California, San Diego


"Dorothy Hobson understands soap opera's power to involveTV viewers better than any-one alive. This remarkable study is ofcompelling interest to the soap addict, to the general reader andto the student of mass media's money magic. A rewardingread."


Jeremy Isaacs, Founding Chief Executive, Channel 4


"The art of TV soap opera has finally come of age and isrecognized by audience and critics as quality drama. This book isthe definitive to the genre, and will prove indis-pensable to fansand academics alike."


Mal Young, BBC Controller, Drama Series
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About Dorothy Hobson

Dorothy Hobson is Senior Lecturer in Media and Cultural Studies at the University of Wolverhamptonand the author
of Crossroads: The Drama of a Soap Opera, Methuen (1982). For the last 3 years she has been Chair of the Royal Television Society Midland Centre. She was elected a fellow of the Royal Television Society in 1999.
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Rating details

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