Thursday, October 25, 2007

Social issues in TV drama

In Media Guardian, Alexandra Topping talks to Lesley Henderson about her new study into the social impact of TV drama.
Soaps, she says, are hugely significant in shaping public views. "You are talking about a genre that [can] attract around 10 million viewers per episode, and a lot of them are young viewers - people who wouldn't normally sit down and watch a news programme or a documentary about breast cancer or mental illness."

That power, she says, can sit uneasily with "making good telly". Henderson, lecturer in sociology and communications at Brunel University, says: "The programme makers have an enormous social responsibility. But, at the end of the day, they want to make good drama, and that combination can be difficult."

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