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Masculinity and Popular Television

Rebecca Feasey

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This book is a comprehensive and accessible introduction to the key debates concerning the representation of masculinities in a wide range of popular television genres. The volume looks at the depiction of public masculinity in the soap opera, homosexuality in the situation comedy, the portrayal of fatherhood in prime-time animation, emerging manhood in the supernatural teen text, alternative gender roles in science fiction, male authority in the police series, masculine anxieties in the hospital drama, violence and aggression in sports coverage, ordinariness and emotional connectedness in the reality game show, and domesticity in lifestyle television. Masculinity and Popular Television examines the ways in which masculinities are being constructed, circulated and interrogated in contemporary British and American programming, and considers the ways in which such images can be understood in relation to the 'common sense' model of the hegemonic male that is said to dominate the cultural landscape.

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1. Introduction: theorising masculinities on the small screen
2. Soap Opera: the male role in the women's genre
3. Situation Comedy: homosexuality and male camaraderie
4. Animation: masculinity in the nuclear family
5. Teen Programming: isolation, alienation and emerging manhood
6. Science Fiction and Fantasy Television: challenging dominant gender roles
7. Trauma Television: reassurance, anxiety and the doctor hero
8. Police and Crime Drama: investigating male authority
9. Sports: media events and masculine discourse
10. Reality Television: ordinariness, exhibitionism and emotional intelligence
11. Lifestyle: domestic labour and leisure activities
12. Advertising: social life, social standing and sex
13. Conclusion: the future of masculinity on television

About the Author

Rebecca Feasey is Senior Lecturer in Film and Media Communications at Bath Spa University. She has previously published in the areas of cult film, celebrity culture, contemporary Hollywood stardom and the representation of gender in popular television.


"As an introduction, Masculinity and Popular Television offers a very good overview of key concerns regarding masculinities on television. It sketches the histories of representations and emphasises the continuation of male dominance in most genres,"


- Elke Weissmann, Edge Hill University , Critical Studies in Television 4/2