Archive for November, 2013

International Television Dramas

Posted: November 27, 2013 in Uncategorized

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In recent years many international television dramas, from countries as diverse as Denmark, France and Korea, have become popular with audiences around the world. On the rising popularity of these TV dramas, see this article: “The International Language of the Tube“. See also “10 international TV shows to binge watch” and “Who’s Afraid of a Few Subtitles: the Rise of International Television“.

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Like Hollywood movies, American television is often criticized  as a force of “cultural imperialism”. If this was true in the past, can we say that television today becoming truly “globalized” — and diverse — with shows and series from a multitude of cultures?

Some argue that, thanks to streaming services like Netflix, we are living in a golden age of television. See this article: “Watch it while it lasts: our golden age of television”.

Is the globalization of Netflix good or bad for cultural diversity? See this article, “If you want to see diversity onscreen, watch Netflix” and “Why Netflix has decided to make diversity a top priority”.  It is also argued that streaming services expose us to series from around the world. See this article, “In praise of international crime dramas” and also this article on best international TV dramas. 

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In television discussion often focuses on the global influence of American programs, with less emphasis on the exportation of British television dramas and shows. In fact, British television has greatly influenced American television, though frequently they are scheduled on PBS for elite American audiences. British television dramas that do reach mass prime-time audiences on American networks are not always as direct imports. Sometimes, due to cultural nuances and the preference in the United States for “American” programs, British television shows are adapted for American audiences.

On that subject, see “10 Great American Adaptations of British Shows“. See also this article in the New York Times: “The British Are Coming, Once Again.” And see also these two articles: “British TV is Coming!” and “When British TV Flies Across the Pond“. On the cultural and linguistic influences of British television in the United States, see “How English is invading America again” and “Britishisms and the Britishisation of American English“. See also “Americans are barmy over Britishisms“and “Britishisms in American English? Brilliant!

It’s not a one-way street, of course. See this article: “10 British Shows Stolen from America“.

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On the rivalry between TV, smartphone, tablet and computer see this article, “In the Digital Era What Does Watching TV Even Mean?


Posted: November 16, 2013 in Uncategorized

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Much has been written about the origins, history, cultural codes, and global commercialization of the Bolllywood movie industry.  See this see this article for a quick timeline on the history of Bollywood movies. See this article in the Economist, “Bollywood and Hollywood: Clouse Encounters“. For a critique of Bollywood films by an Indian film critic in Britain, see this article in the Guardian: “The Bollywood Conundrum. On the global commercialization of Bollywood movies, see this article Is Bollywood Coming to Hollywood. Also, this article in Forbes magazine on Hollywood star Sylvester Stallone‘s foray into Bollywood movies, Can Stallone Save Bollywood?”

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This week it was reported that some 80 people in North Korea were executed for watching smuggled foreign films and TV dramas. See these articles: “Dozens executed in North Korea for watching foreign films” and “North Korea publicly executes 80 people“.

Britney Spears and Somali Pirates

Posted: November 10, 2013 in Uncategorized

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The lateset weapon against Somali pirates: Britney Spears songs. See this article in the Guardian, “Britney Spears music used by British navy to scare off Somali pirates” and “Britney Spears music blasted out by merchant navy to scare off Somali pirates“.