XWe have detected your location as outside the U.S/Canada, if you think this is wrong, you can choose your location.

Palgrave Macmillan

British Television Drama

Past, Present and Future

Edition 2nd edition
ISBN 9781137327567
Publication Date May 2014
Formats Hardcover Ebook (PDF) Ebook (EPUB) Paperback 
Publisher Palgrave Macmillan

British Television Drama provides resources for critical thinking about key aspects of television drama in Britain since 1960, including institutional, textual, cultural, economic and audience-centred modes of study. It presents and contests significant strands of critical work in the field, since the essays by TV professionals reveal their strongly-held views about TV (which often conflict productively with the views of fellow contributors) and the academics offer reasoned and more developed arguments that advance understanding. The new edition includes a revised chapter by acclaimed TV producer Tony Garnett reflecting on his work since Cathy Come Home in the 1960s, new chapters by Phil Redmond, the creator of Brookside and Hollyoaks, and Cameron Roach, Head of Drama Commissioning at Sky TV and former executive producer of Waterloo Road. New academic analyses include work on Downton Abbey, The Sarah Jane Adventures, Ashes to Ashes, adaptations of Persuasion, and the changing production methods on Coronation Street. The book's three sections are framed by new introductory essays by the editors to establish and contextualise the primary concerns and methodologies of each chapter.

Jonathan Bignell is Professor of Television and Film at the University of Reading, UK. He works on the history and analysis of television, especially television drama in the UK and USA, using archival sources and the detailed analysis of programmes.

Stephen Lacey is Emeritus Professor of Drama and Television at the University of South Wales, UK. He researches and publishes on post 1945 British theatre and television drama, especially in the UK and USA.

Notes on the Contributors
Editors' Introduction
1. Contexts; Tony Garnett
Editors' Introduction to Part I
2. Sydney Newman and the 'Golden Age'; Shaun Sutton
3. Television Drama Series: a Producer's View; Irene Shubik
4. TV Drama: Then and Now; John McGrath
5. Writing Television Drama - Then and Now; Andrew Davies
6 Brookside: The Technology Backstory; Phil Redmond
7 Plot Inflation in Greater Weatherfield: Coronation Street in the 1990s; Billy Smart
8 Persuaded? The Impact of Changing Production Contexts on Three Adaptations of Persuasion; Sarah Cardwell
Editors' Introduction to Part II
9. 'The Age of Innocence'; Alan Plater
10. Playing Shops, Shopping Plays: The Effect of the Internal Market on Television Drama; David Edgar
11. 'A Hero Mumsy': Parenting, Power, and Production Changes in The Sarah Jane Adventures; Victoria Byard
12. Downton Abbey: Reinventing the British Costume Drama; James Chapman
13. What Do Actors Do When They Act? John Caughie
CODA: Timothy West discusses 'Acting on Stage: Acting on Screen', followed by extracts from the discussion after his and John Caughie's presentations.
14. The 1970s: Regional Variations; Barry Hanson
15. 'What Truth is there in this Story?': The Dramatisation of Northern Ireland; Edward Braun
16. Moving Waterloo Road from Rochdale to Greenock: Exploring a Sense of Place in Drama Series; Cameron Roach
17. Too Secret for Words: Coded Dissent in Female-authored Wednesday Plays; Madeleine Macmurraugh-Kavanagh
18. 'Ah! Our very own Juliet Bravo, or is it Jill Gascoine?' Ashes to Ashes and Representations of Gender; Ben Lamb
19. Power Plays: Gender, Genre, and Lynda La Plante; Julia Hallam
Editors' Conclusion
Select Bibliography

Jonathan Bignell, University of Reading, UK
Edward Braun University of Bristol, UK
Victoria Byard, University of Leicester, UK
Sarah Cardwell, University of Kent, UK
John Caughie, Glasgow University, UK
James Chapman, University of Leicester, UK
Andrew Davies, writer for television, UK
David Edgar, University of Birmingham, UK
Tony Garnett, film and television producer, UK
Julia Hallam, University of Liverpool, UK
Barry Hanson, television producer, UK
Stephen Lacey, University of South Wales, UK
Ben Lamb, University of South Wales, UK
John McGrath, film and theatre producer, UK
Madeleine Macmurraugh-Kavanagh (Davies), University of Reading, UK
Alan Plater, writer for television, UK
Phil Redmond, producer and screenwriter, UK
Cameron Roach, Senior Commissioning Editor for Drama at BSkyB, UK
Irene Shubik, television producer, UK
Billy Smart, Royal Holloway University of London, UK
Shaun Sutton, drama producer, UK
Timothy West, stage, film and television actor, UK


"The book not only brings academics and TV professionals together in the debate about televised drama but also provides a probing, but not over-technical introduction to the field of British Television Drama." - Christian-Martin Czypull, University of Hannover, European Journal of English Studies
"Overall this collection remains valuable reading for anyone interested in the academic and commercial analysis of television drama, with valuable new perspectives offered by the newly commissioned chapters." - Mark Fryers, University of East Anglia
Add a review

Related titles