Tuesday, 20 March 2012

'Call for Papers'

Changing media platforms, most notably digitisation, have meant that written and visual material originated by British television production companies since the late-1940s are increasingly available for historical research. This workshop will discuss the implications of this for the historian in terms of research methods and enquiry, and how this affects historical understandings of the relationship between British society and the 'small screen'.

Television in both programming and news formats, provides valuable insights into home and working environments. Examining the development of the television industry since the mid-twentieth century and its increasingly dominant position in social commentary and popular culture gives rise to questions such as: What kind of social record does television material provide for historical research? How can this record be incorporated into the range of sources used by social and economic historians of the twentieth century? In what ways can analysis of this material challenge current historigraphy discusing social change in Britain in the twentieth century?

The aim is to bring researchers together to discuss the specific challenges involved in researching television and writing history, to encourage social and economic historians to bring their own perspective to this highly significant, but in many ways underexplored phenomenon.

Twenty minute papers are invited from both established scholars and post-graduate students on, but not limited to, the following themes:
  • The economy of television production: Licensing, advertising and region in the production of television
  • 'Public Service' and British broadcasting: regulation, industry practice and 'social pressure' in the shaping of British television
  • The social life of television: representing the television audience and accessing audience practices
  • Reconciling visual and written sources: Understanding the 'effects of television' in print, film and radio
  • Visual sources and ethics: Questions for researchers working with changing media platforms
Abstracts of 300 words maximum should be sent to Gillian Murray, gem10@le.ac.uk, by Monday April 30th.

This workshop is funded by the Economic History Society and is free to attend.