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Simplicity and complexity in Father Ted
Karen Quigley

's Catholicism and conservatism began seemingly to melt away. Of course, the breakdown of the relationship between the Irish people and the Catholic Church has complex and profound political, social and psychological roots, but I hope to show in what follows that culture, particularly comedy, can be central to the contemporary understanding of this relationship and its disintegration. Amongst other things, this chapter's re-evaluation of Father Ted (Channel 4, 1995–98) hopes to remind the reader of a moment in 1990s British sitcom television when the international

in Complexity / simplicity
Portraying medicine, poverty, and the bubonic plague in La Peste
Ragas José, Palma Patricia, and González-Donoso Guillermo

framework in which the epidemic is contested and understood. In general terms, the epoch was marked by the dominance of the Catholic Church, which considered itself a pillar of the Spanish global monarchy. The hegemony of the Catholic Church set the contours of intellectual freedom and religious reform. In the series, the Holy Office, represented by Inquisitor Celso de Guevara, supports and manipulates Mateo’s investigation to

in Diagnosing history
Abstract only
Author: Steve Blandford

This is the first book-length study of one of the most significant of all British television writers, Jimmy McGovern. The book provides comprehensive coverage of all his work for television including early writing on Brookside, major documentary dramas such as Hillsborough and Sunday and more recent series such as The Street and Accused.

Whilst the book is firmly focused on McGovern’s own work, the range of his output over the period in which he has been working also provides something of an overview of the radical changes in television drama commissioning that have taken place during this time. Without compromising his deeply-held convictions McGovern has managed to adapt to an ever changing environment, often using his position as a sought-after writer to defy industry trends.

The book also challenges the notion of McGovern as an uncomplicated social realist in stylistic terms. Looking particularly at his later work, a case is made for McGovern employing a greater range of narrative approaches, albeit subtly and within boundaries that allow him to continue to write for large popular audiences.

Finally it is worth pointing to the book’s examination of McGovern’s role in recent years as a mentor to new voices, frequently acting as a creative producer on series that he part-writes and part brings through different less-experienced names.

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Alan Rosenthal

ramifications of religious fundamentalism. Inter alia he interviewed ‘born-again’ Christians, looked at the careers of 107 108 The documentary diaries Jim and Tammy Bakker, and the pursuit of money under the guise of requesting religious donations. In a later film Celibacy, Antony investigated the whole question of celibacy for ordained clergy in the Catholic church. In his opinion the thousand year-old doctrine had parallels in the Church’s attack on Galileo, who argued the earth went round the sun, not vice versa. Eventually the church came round to acknowledging

in The documentary diaries
Social contexts in L’Inchiesta and Risen
Fernando Gabriel Pagnoni Berns and Emiliano Aguilar

both films tap into social anxieties about religion and justice following their own social and cultural contexts. The biblical-procedural film: looking for justice in an unjust world For centuries, the Roman Catholic Church withstood all the currents of change in history and maintained a closely shielded orthodoxy which has always served as the centre of all Christianity. Currently, this orthodoxy is battling one of its greatest challenges: a diminished commitment to the Church. ‘Pupils, families and teachers live in the cultural noise and traffic of the twenty

in The Bible onscreen in the new millennium
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Costa-Gavras and microhistoriography: the case of Amen. (2002)
Homer B. Pettey

narrative, and imagistically providing filmic discovery of the atrocities of Nazism and the complicity of the Roman Catholic Church. His intention was not to film the play, but rather to present a microhistory of the Final Solution. Unlike in the play, Pope Pius XII is a background figure, since Costa-Gavras desires another form of history: not institutional, not a grand narrative, but a history that comes about through visual enactment of personal reactions. In this effort to combine narrative and image, Costa-Gavras interprets the conflicting political and theological

in The films of Costa-Gavras
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La mala educación
Ana María Sánchez-Arce

agony of their own wisdom, … he frames redemption itself as a process of maturity through suffering’ ( 2004 : 5). However, in creating a fictional version of his brother’s death at the hands of the person he was blackmailing, this conquest is less atonement than a fictional revision of that past, a revision where the Catholic Church takes all the blame and Juan can mourn his brother’s death as part of an obscure past left behind during Spain’s Transition to a supposedly democratic, secular country. This use of fictional memory has been called ‘prosthetic memory’ by

in The cinema of Pedro Almodóvar
Steve Blandford

Single plays and a conclusion 4 This chapter brings together an account of McGovern’s single plays for television and ends with a brief Conclusion to the book. In certain respects it would also have been useful to cover McGovern’s work for cinema in Priest, Heart and Liam, which offer interesting points of comparison to the single plays for television, particularly through the intensity of their scrutiny of the Catholic Church. However, strictly speaking, cinema is beyond the scope of this series, and space restrictions dictate that such a boundary needs to be

in Jimmy McGovern
Ruth Barton

are addressed as a witness. As we will shortly see, these distinctions very usefully help to understand how the history films discussed in this chapter can undercut the comfort of narrative closure through moments of intense emotional engagement. Narrating abuse The Magdalene Sisters takes its place amongst a series of exposés concerning the Catholic Church and institutional abuse. Most writers on the Irish scandals agree that child sexual abuse entered the public domain with the Kilkenny incest case of 1993 when a father of two was sentenced to

in Irish cinema in the twenty-first century
Barry Jordan

suffered by Ramón. Antena 3 defended its decision to run the controversial footage given its ‘indudable importancia social’ ( El Mundo , 6 March 1998), despite ferocious attacks from Ramón’s family, television viewers’ associations and Spain’s Catholic Church. Also, shortly afterwards, in an effort to decriminalise assisted suicide and protect the friends who had helped him, many thousands of Spaniards signed a national DMD

in Alejandro Amenábar