The Continuing Story of Irish Television Drama: Tracking The Tiger

tigertv4ISBN 1-85182-688-2 hbk
ISBN 1-85182-689-0 pbk

published by Four Courts Press 2004
includes free cd-rom of new edition of Irish Television Drama: A Sociey and Its Stories

The blurb:

Irish Television Dram: A Society and Its Stories appeared in 1987. It traced 25 years (1962-1987) of Irish society in a process of social transformation and the role of television drama in a struggle to define the nature of that process. This book is a sequel to that one, advancing the story another 15 years (1987-2002). From Fair City to Family to Father Ted, it examines television drama in the time of the celtic tiger, striving to come to terms with the flux of Irish life in an increasingly globalised world, in a time of significant changes in the climate of broadcasting and its structures of storytelling.

Dr. Helena Sheehan is senior lecturer in communications at Dublin City University where she teaches history of ideas and media studies. She is author of two previous books: Marxism and the Philosophy of Science: A Critical History (1985, 1993) and Irish Television Dram: A Society and Its Stories (1987), as well as many articles dealing with philosophy, politics and media.

From the preface:

This book … takes us into the time of the tiger. The tiger in the earlier years was just a feisty cub, smaller and poorer than the rest, but quick to maximise its assets in the game of globalisation. Then came the boom and the flow of milk and honey, cocktails and cappuccinos, megabytes of e-mail and the never ending ringing of mobile phones. There was pride and plenty, but there was also crassness and confusion and exclusion. Living it was one thing, not always as simple as it seemed, but conceptualising it and narrating it were more complex still. Television drama struggled to come to terms with the times, often with considerable confusion, but occasionally with moments of piercing clarity.

In these years much was happening in the world, raising many questions about the relationships of waves of world historical events, the daily flux of experience and the flow of television drama. There have been significant changes, for example, in the climate surrounding broadcasting and in its structures of storytelling: a shift from centralised in-house production to decentralised outsourced production and co-production; an intensified challenge to public service broadcasting from more commercial forces; the impact of new technological developments such as the internet and digitisation …

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