Capturing the 'Real' in British Television Fiction: Experiments in/of Realism— An Abiding and Evolving Notion

Renée Dickason
2011 Synthesis  
The realistic mode of depiction has been an abiding feature of British television fictions intended for British audiences ever since the rebirth of the medium after the Second World War. After briefly evoking the origins of realism in British audio-visual media and some of the reasons for its continued popularity with both viewers and broadcasters, this article examines how the constant challenge of "putting 'reality' together" (Schlesinger) has been met by innovation and experiment in
more » ... eriment in differing social, political, and economic climates since the mid-1950s and how the perception of television realism itself has evolved. In the context of reality television and today's post-modern hybrids which blur the distinctions between fact and fiction, entertainment and information, this article concludes with a reflection on whether British television's (re)creation of reality is an end in itself or whether it is a means of achieving other objectives.
doi:10.12681/syn.16922 fatcat:dt4capn2tjcfzfdgrsur2vekae