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Popular television genres as a reflection of contemporary society

Author(s): Helena Popović

Journal: Holon
ISSN 1848-3518

Volume: 2;
Issue: 3;
Start page: 18;
Date: 2012;
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Keywords: genre | classification | television genres | popular genre | ideology

This paper analyses genre and the way genre categories are constructed, with a special focus on television genres and their peculiarities. A comparison is made between Raymond Williams’s television genre classification from 1973 and Creebers’ and others classification from 2008. The comparison reflects the apparent transformation of the role of television: from a medium supposed to serve the purpose of information and education to a medium dominated by entertainment. Contemporary television is characterized by a proliferation of entertainment genres such as soap opera, situation comedy, quiz show, talk show and reality television, each of which carries specific ideological implications. The main focus is placed on the ordinary and everyday life, the personal, emotional and intimate. In addition, individualism and competitiveness are promoted, while fame is promoted as the ultimate success of the individual. The fundamental values implied are populism and anti-elitism; the unequal distribution of power is legitimized through individualism and personal success - defined as material wealth and fame.
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