Teens, TV and Tunes

The Manufacturing of American Adolescent Culture


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About the Book

This political analysis of teen culture examines the historical and ideological development of American youth society, the economic and ideological relationship between television and popular music, and the ideological rivalry between Nickelodeon and Disney.
More than mere entertainment, teen sitcoms and pop music portray a complex and often contradictory set of cultural discourses. They engage in a process of ideology marketing and “hip versus square” politics. Case studies include Saved by the Bell, Britney Spears, the movie School of Rock, early “pop music sitcoms” like The Monkees and The Partridge Family, and recent staples of teen culture such as iCarly and Hannah Montana.
What is occurring in teen culture has a crucial bearing as today’s teens age into adulthood and become the dominant generation in the impending decades.

About the Author(s)

Independent scholar Doyle Greene is the author of several books and serves on the editorial board of Film Criticism. He lives in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

Bibliographic Details

Doyle Greene
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 229
Bibliographic Info: 11 photos, filmography, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2012
pISBN: 978-0-7864-6642-9
eISBN: 978-0-7864-8972-5
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgements      vi

Preface      1

Introduction: Reading Teen Culture      3

Part One: Don’t Trust Anyone Over Thirty

1: Teen Culture Industry (or, You Pays Your Money and You Takes Your Choice)      15

2. On the Importance of Being Hip      23

Part Two: The Society of the Teen Sitcom

3. The Form and Function of the Sitcom      39

4. Free, White, and Teenage Male (or, How to Con Friends and Manipulate People): Saved by the Bell      48

5. Nickelodeon Nation Building: From Clarissa Explains It All to Zoey 101      55

6. The Political Dilemmas of iCarly      72

7. I Have a Dream Job: True Jackson, VP      90

Part Three: Pop Goes Teen Culture

8. The Birth of the Pop Music Sitcom: The Monkees, the Archies, and the Partridge Family      101

9. Teen Pop in Opposition: Britney Spears versus Madonna      119

10. My Generation: School of Rock and the Revival of Rock Ideology      133

11. Keeping It Real and Imaginary: The Ideological Contradictions of Hannah Montana      146

12. The Boy Brands Are Back in Town (or, Triumph of the Hip): Big Time Rush      162

Conclusion: The Youth of Today Are the Leaders of Tomorrow      173

Appendix: Cast Listings      177

Chapter Notes      181

Bibliography      209

Index      213