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TV Socialism

9780822360858: Hardback
Release Date: 3rd June 2016

9780822360995: Paperback
Release Date: 3rd June 2016

20 illustrations

Dimensions: 152 x 229

Number of Pages: 328

Series Console-ing Passions

Duke University Press Books

TV Socialism

Hardback / £79.00
Paperback / £20.99

In TV Socialism, Anikó Imre provides an innovative history of television in socialist Europe during and after the Cold War. Rather than uniform propaganda programming, Imre finds rich evidence of hybrid aesthetic and economic practices, including frequent exchanges within the region and with Western media, a steady production of varied genre entertainment, elements of European public service broadcasting, and transcultural, multi-lingual reception practices. These televisual practices challenge conventional understandings of culture under socialism, divisions between East and West, and the divide between socialism and postsocialism. Taking a broad regional perspective encompassing Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union, Imre foregrounds continuities between socialist television and the region’s shared imperial histories, including the programming trends, distribution patterns, and reception practices that extended into postsocialism. Television, she argues, is key to understanding European socialist cultures and to making sense of developments after the end of the Cold War and the enduring global legacy of socialism.
Acknowledgments  vii

Introduction. Why Do We Need to Talk about Socialism and TV?  1

Part I. Genres of Realism and Reality

1. From Socialist Realism to Emotional Realism  27

2. Tele-education  40

3. Crime Appeal  66

4. The Great Socialist Game (Show)  83

5. Postsocialist Ethno-Racial Reality TV  108

Part II. Genres of History

6. The Historical Adventure Drama  133

7. Postsocialist Nostalgia and European Historical Drama  155

8. Commercials as Time-Space Machines  173

Part III. Genres of Fiction

9. Women and TV  187

10. Socialist Soaps  199

Part IV. Genres of Humor

11. Socialist Comedy  227

12. (Post)socialist Political Satire  242

Afterword. Afterward  257

Notes  261

Bibliography  299

Index  311
Anikó Imre is Associate Professor and Chair of Critical Studies in the School of Cinematic Arts at the University of Southern California. She is the author of Identity Games: Globalization and the Transformation of Media Cultures in the New Europe.
TV Socialism is a comprehensive and highly original contribution to television studies, and it will become indispensable in socialist/postsocialist studies. Anikó Imre’s scholarship is superior and her book is outstanding in its breadth and depth of coverage.”
Kristen Ghodsee, author of
The Left Side of History: World War II and the Unfulfilled Promise of Communism in Eastern Europe
"Cautioning us against simplistic uses of Anglo-American categories of television genres, Anikó Imre explains how the industry definitions of genre and audience expectations of genres evolved very differently in socialist societies. By defining genre as a 'transcultural form of expression' rather than as a given set of conventions, Imre demonstrates how the genric logic of television is embedded in the aesthetic, political, cultural, and ideological transformations in socialist and postsocialist societies."
Shanti Kumar, author of
Gandhi Meets Primetime: Globalization and Nationalism in Indian Television
"TV Socialism is a must read for any scholars of television history, historians of socialist everyday life, those interested in memory and students exploring socialist history. Imre provides invaluable insights and poses bold questions that will stimulate debates on socialist television for years to come."
Kinga S. Bloch
"... [Imre] has composed an engaging and path-breaking study offering further insight into the multiplicity of phenomena long obscured behind the notion of totalitarianism."
David Sockol
"Anikó Imre has written a field-transforming book, with implications that reach far beyond television studies."
Christine E Evans
European Journal of Cultural Studies
"...TV Socialism has as much to offer scholars of post-socialism as scholars of state socialism itself. Imre’s insightful analyses of often-trivialized popular television genres offer novel perspectives on key themes in post-socialist media studies such as nostalgia and nationalism."
Catherine Baker
Feminist Media Studies
"Pathbreaking and powerfully informative."
Olga Mesropova
The Russian Review