Identification and mediascape: 'Ally McBeal', 'Sex and the City' and female audiences.

NAYLOR, Anne-Marie. (2008). Identification and mediascape: 'Ally McBeal', 'Sex and the City' and female audiences. Masters, Sheffield Hallam University (United Kingdom)..

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Abstract

This is a study of the female audience of Ally McBeal (1997- 2002) and Sex and the City (1998- 2003). It explores questions of audience identification and the location of that identification within a broader 'mediascape' which informs the way audiences engage with individual media texts.My research takes feminist audience studies of women and popular culture and more recent work on audiences and media culture as its starting point. It employs a qualitative, multimethod approach using message board analysis, questionnaires, interviews and focus groups to explore the different ways women talk about the series. It focuses on different 'layers' within the audience, from dedicated fans to less engaged viewers.The study found that although these series have been described as superficial and trivial, their female audiences takes them seriously and engage with them in complex ways. It suggests a continuum of relationships between viewers and the characters and experiences portrayed on screen. At one end there is close and personal identification, where respondents relate to the characters through personal experiences while at the other is a gendered recognition of things that women experience. There are multiple positions between the two points.The study suggests that the concept of a mediascape is fundamental to an understanding of contemporary audiences and the ways in which they consume media products. There also appears to be different levels of audience engagement with and activity within the mediascape.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
Additional Information: Thesis (M.Phil.)--Sheffield Hallam University (United Kingdom), 2008.
Research Institute, Centre or Group: Sheffield Hallam Doctoral Theses
Depositing User: EPrints Services
Date Deposited: 10 Apr 2018 17:21
Last Modified: 23 May 2018 12:38
URI: http://shura.shu.ac.uk/id/eprint/20112

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