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Title: Representations of gender and subjectivity in 21st century American science fiction television
Author: Halliday, Sophie
ISNI:       0000 0004 5352 2881
Awarding Body: University of East Anglia
Current Institution: University of East Anglia
Date of Award: 2014
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This thesis interrogates representations of gender and subjectivity within 21st century American science fiction television. It recognises a recent convergence of generic concerns, the shifting contexts of television, and the cultural context of 21st century America. Identifying a recent shift in how American science fiction television of this era has engaged with issues of gender and subjectivity, I offer an exploration of this trend via four key texts: Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles (FOX, 2008-2009), Fringe (FOX, 2008-2013), Battlestar Galactica (SyFy, 2004-2009) and Caprica (SyFy, 2009-2010). The importance of this thesis lies in its exploration of new representational strategies in contemporary science fiction television in relation to the female body, and its consideration of the wider socio-cultural concerns of America in the 21st century. Previous attempts have been made to examine the socio-political import of certain series this thesis interrogates. I intervene in these debates by offering a much more focused interrogation of gender and subjectivity in 21st century science fiction television, via the framework of acclaimed and newly emerging series. Utilising a methodological approach that involves detailed textual analysis informed by social and cultural theory, I situate my case study series within the socio-cultural context of 21st century America. As such, this thesis covers a broad range of current representations that speak to how constructions of gender and subjectivity within a contemporary US cultural context are currently being worked through. Foregrounding an engagement with a particularly fraught period of American history via the female body, I argue that the protagonists my case study series present offer a positive intervention in previous estimations of how the female body has been utilised in film and television. As such, this thesis considers the implications of this particular context upon how these protagonists are represented by these newly emerging series.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available