The Citizen Machine

Tuesday, August 03, 2010

Historian Anna McCarthy, associate professor of Cinema Studies at New York University, talks about the political history of television’s early years. Her book The Citizen Machine: Governing by Television in 1950s America, looks at how leaders from business and philanthropy, social reformers and public intellectuals were all concerned with TV’s potential to mold model American citizens.


Anna McCarthy

Comments [4]

Timmy from Minnesota

Great topic and great interview, thanks.

Aug. 12 2010 11:50 PM
Media Record from U.K.

This is thought provoking stuff after Ambient TV. Professor McCarthy manages to unravel the behind the scenes influences during T.V.s formative years with unexpected and interesting results, some of which still apply today. There could be interesting parallels with other more recent formative media like the internet. The Citizen Machine is a must read if you want to challenge banal T.V.!

Aug. 04 2010 05:28 AM

Some thought provoking material, I enjoyed Ambient TV and McCarthys latest book offers rare insight into the machinations of the industries during the 50s

Aug. 04 2010 04:59 AM
Laura from UWS

Terrific segment. Thanks. Related writings about PR effort to undo the New Deal:

"Invisible Hands: The making of the Conservative Movement from the New Deal to Reagan" by Kim Phillips-Fein.

Google search terms: "friendly giants" "silver chains" will get you to Google Books, "PR!: A Social History of Spin" By Stuart Ewen

Aug. 03 2010 01:40 PM

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