Review: Martin Spetsmann-Kunkel (2004). Die Moral der Daytime Talkshow. Eine soziologische Analyse eines umstrittenen Fernsehformats [The Morality of the Daytime Talk Show. A Sociological Analysis of a Controversial Television Format]

Nicola Döring


This book deals with the phenomenon of the daytime talk show from a sociological perspective. The author questions the common cultural pessimism of this TV format ("exhibitionist guests," "voyeuristic spectators"). He first describes the characteristics of the daytime talk show and summarizes the results of previous surveys that reveal a broad variety of talk show guests' and recipients' motives—beyond pathology. Drawing on concepts like civilization and individualisation, the book outlines the societal functions of the daytime talk show. A participatory observation study in the editorial office of "Hans Meiser" and free interpretations of three series from "Vera am Mittag" are presented as "empirical evidence." Unfortunately the book lacks theoretical and methodological rigor and a sound empirical basis. The bibliography could have been more comprehensive. The work is useful, though, as an inspired, readable introduction into the topic.
URN: urn:nbn:de:0114-fqs0603119


daytime talk show; media critic; privacy; television reception; television appearance; individualization; civilization process; participatory observation; conversation analysis

Copyright (c) 2006 Nicola Döring

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