The Politics of Television Space


Location: Leicester University

Audience: Public

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The Politics of Television Space was the first symposium to arise from the AHRC-funded project Spaces of Television. The project itself is led by Professor Jonathan Bignell (University of Reading) in collaboration with the Professor James Chapman (University of Leicester) and Professor Stephen Lacey (University of Glamorgan).

Peter Hutchings (author of Hammer and Beyond: The British Horror Film) presented a keynote lecture: ‘Dangerous Spaces: Studios, video and the 1970s psychological thriller’.

Guest speakers Howard Schuman (writer of Rock Follies and many single plays) and Piers Haggard (director of Pennies from Heaven and The Quatermass Conclusion) discussed their experiences of working in a variety of production contexts and environments.

Other papers included:

  • Matthew Bailey: ‘Corridors of power: the depiction of the House of Commons in television drama’.
  • Jonathan Bignell: ‘Modernity and spatial politics: Gerry Anderson’s puppet science fictions’.
  • E. Anna Claydon: ‘The Detective, the Criminal and the Countryside: the place of rural Britain in the criminal landscape’.
  • David Dunn: ‘A Tangle with the Isles: Contested spaces in Scottish Television’s Gaelic soap opera Machair’.
  • Richard Hewett: ‘Survivors: modes of production and acting style’.
  • Rachael Keene: ‘Breaking up the Sameness’: Channel 4’s Eleventh Hour and the scheduling of independent film and video on British television’.
  • Douglas McNaughton: ‘Imperial Spaces: I, Claudius and constructing the Eternal City at White City’.
  • Laura Mayne: ‘A sense of time and place’: examining the regional aesthetic in the work of Channel 4’s first Commissioning Editor for Fiction, David Rose’.
  • Andrew O’Day: ‘“I, Spy, with my little eye”: Surveillance and space in Doctor Who’.
  • Leah Panos: ‘Humanising politics: dramatic space in Trevor Griffiths’ studio plays’.
  • Sally Shaw: ‘Light entertainment’ as contested socio-political space: audience and institutional responses to Love Thy Neighbour (1972-76)’.
  • Sheryl Wilson and Simon Cross: 'In Two Minds and the politics of madness’.