A girl in a fancy dress reads a book in the countryside

Week and course summary

To summarise this week, we have considered the way in which a genre roundly criticised as ‘trash television’ can actually be viewed positively as fulfilling public service broadcasters’ remits for creating educational as well as entertaining content.

We looked at some examples from the BBC in recent years, which depict children engaged in studying and staging Shakespeare as evidence of this.

Thank you for joining us on this course. We hope you enjoyed studying it, as much as we enjoyed immersing ourselves in the worlds of Totoro and Tintin to prepare it. We aimed to develop your skills to analyse children’s visual worlds including and beyond picturebooks, comics, film, and television; to recognise their sophistication and their far-reaching influence. We hope we’ve encouraged you to look at even more pictures of youth in publishing, popular culture and everyday life.

If you are interested in reading more about reality television and children’s Shakespeare, here are some of the works I would recommend and have drawn on in this session:

  • Biressi, Anita and Heather Nunn. (2005) Reality TV: realism and revelation. London: Wallflower Press.

  • Heller, Dana. Ed. (2007). Makeover television: realities remodelled. London: IB Tauris.

  • Kilburn, Richard. (2003). Staging the real: factual TV programming in the age of Big Brother. Manchester: MUP.

  • Miller, Naomi. (2009). Reimagining Shakespeare for Children and Young People. NY: Routledge.

  • Ouellette, Laurie and James Hay. (2008). Better Living Through Reality TV. Oxford: Blackwell.

  • Rokison, Abigail. (2013). Shakespeare for Children and Young People. London: Bloomsbury.

  • Weber, Branda. (2009). Makeover TV. Durham, NC: Duke University Press.

  • Wood, Helen and Beverley Skeggs. (2011). *Reality Television and Class”. London: Palgrave.

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This article is from the free online course:

Pictures of Youth: An Introduction to Children’s Visual Culture

University of York