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Moments in television

This collection appraises an eclectic selection of programmes, exploring and weighing their particular achievements and their contribution to the television landscape. It does so via a simultaneous engagement with the concepts of complexity and simplicity. This book considers how complexity, which is currently attracting much interest in TV studies, impacts upon the practice of critical and evaluative interpretation. It engages reflectively and critically with a range of recent work on televisual complexity, expands existing conceptions of complex TV and directs attention to neglected sources and types of complexity. It also reassesses simplicity, a relatively neglected category in TV criticism, as a helpful criterion for evaluation. It seeks out and reappraises the importance of simple qualities to particular TV works, and explores how simplicity might be revalued as a potentially positive and valuable aesthetic feature. Finally, the book illuminates the creative achievements that arise from balancing simplicity with complexity.

The contributors to this collection come from diverse areas of TV studies, bringing with them myriad interests, expertise and perspectives. All chapters undertake close analysis of selected moments in television, considering a wide range of stylistic elements including mise-en-scène, spatial organisation and composition, scripting, costuming, characterisation, performance, lighting and sound design, colour and patterning. The range of television works addressed is similarly broad, covering UK and US drama, comedy-drama, sitcom, animation, science fiction, adaptation and advertisement. Programmes comprise The Handmaid’s Tale, House of Cards, Father Ted, Rick and Morty, Killing Eve, The Wire, Veep, Doctor Who, Vanity Fair and The Long Wait.

Mark Robson

, to ask: What does one call the space currently occupied by aesthetics before aesthetics emerges? In shifting the emphasis from the temporal dimension to the spatial one, this reformulation of my initial question conjures up a division of intellectual categories that already implies the existence of the aesthetic. In other words, it assumes the

in The sense of early modern writing
Open Access (free)
Andrew Bowie

INTRODUCTION Aesthetics and modernity In recent years it has become apparent that many questions which first became manifest during the emergence of philosophical aesthetics at the end of the eighteenth century play a decisive role both in mainstream philosophy and in literary theory. The critiques of the idea that the world is ‘ready-made’ by Hilary Putnam and other pragmatically oriented thinkers, the concomitant attention by Nelson Goodman, Richard Rorty and others to the ‘world-making’ aspects of language, the related moves in the philosophy of language on

in Aesthetics and subjectivity
Ruth Pelzer-Montada

and ‘print culture’, rather than of connoisseurial art history. This is not to deny the relevance of aesthetics. The term ‘print culture’ here serves to highlight print's function as a mode of communication rather than aesthetics alone. As the title of his chapter indicates, Swiss art historian and media theorist Beat Wyss suggests that specific

in Perspectives on contemporary printmaking
Mark Robson

7 Mark Robson Defending poetry, or, is there an early modern aesthetic? Is there an early modern aesthetic? Or, better: What does one call the space currently occupied by aesthetics before aesthetics emerges? This question appears within the space occupied by what has become known in certain literary-critical circles as the early modern period, broadly defined as 1500–1700.1 Formulation of the idea of the early modern can be taken as an exemplary moment in the permeation of a ‘new’ historicism through literary studies since the early 1980s, most obviously

in The new aestheticism
Chris Morris and comedy’s representational strategies
Brett Mills

comedy which looks like it should, and, therefore, often refuses to offer the audience the kinds of pleasures most commonly associated with humour. The experimentalism in Morris’s work is only meaningful because it reacts against, and plays around with, the generic expectations of comedy aesthetics. There are a set of traditions which have informed the ways in which comedy and entertainment programming have been shot, promoted and understood, and these have remained fairly unchanged since the begin- 3049 Experimental British Tele 16/5/07 08:02 Page 181 Chris

in Experimental British television
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Andreas Immanuel Graae and Kathrin Maurer

Lisa Parks and Caren Kaplan, a work that does indeed span the breadth of humanities disciplines to include historical, colonial, gendered and networked perceptions of drones. While the contributions to Parks’s and Kaplan’s volume engage with non-Western representations of drone war, this perspective is even more thoroughly unfolded in Ronak K. Kapadia’s recent book Insurgent Aesthetics: Security and the Queer Life of the Forever War (2019), which conceptualises the world-making power of contemporary art responses to US militarism in the Middle East. There is no

in Drone imaginaries
Thomas Osborne

Culture and subjectivation – Interpretations – Power – Creative singularity – Aesthetics of existence – Relevance – Truthfulness and ressentiment – Art and creativity – Pastoralism, bio-power and the artistic life – Asceticism – Creative ethics – Political ethos – Resistance – Liberalism as critique – Culture – Critical virtue – Educationality and style Michel Foucault wrote next to nothing specifically about the concept of culture, did not publish too much about art and barely addressed in a direct way the specific issue of creativity. He is

in The structure of modern cultural theory
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Moments in television

In television scholarship, sound and image have been attended to in different ways, but image has historically dominated. The chapters gathered here attend to both: they weigh the impact and significance of specific choices of sound and image, explore their interactions, and assess their roles in establishing meaning and style. The contributors address a wide range of technical and stylistic elements relating to the television image. They consider production design choices, the spatial organisation of the television frame and how camera movements position and reposition parts of the visible world. They explore mise-en-scène, landscapes and backgrounds, settings and scenery, and costumes and props. They attend to details of actors’ performances, as well as lighting design and patterns of colour and scale. As regards sound, each chapter distinguishes different components on a soundtrack, delineating diegetic from non-diegetic sound, and evaluating the roles of elements such as music, dialogue, voice-over, bodily sounds, performed and non-performed sounds. Attending to sound design, contributors address motifs, repetition and rhythm in both music and non-musical sound. Consideration is also given to the significance of quietness, the absence of sounds, and silence. Programmes studied comprise The Twilight Zone, Inspector Morse, Children of the Stones, Dancing on the Edge, Road, Twin Peaks: The Return, Bodyguard, The Walking Dead and Mad Men. Sound and image are evaluated across these examples from a wide range of television forms, formats and genres, which includes series, serial and one-off dramas, children’s programmes, science fiction, thrillers and detective shows.

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The sense of early modern writing
Mark Robson

sense is made: rhetoric, poetics and aesthetics. Coming to terms with rhetoric, poetics and aesthetics, I believe, is essential for understanding not only early modern writing but also a certain influential narrative of modernity. 1 This notion of modernity is not a purely literary one, and my discussion has nothing to say about artistic ideas of modernism. Rather, the narrative I have in mind is best thought of as

in The sense of early modern writing