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Why people watch soap opera: an analysis of the explanations of British viewers

Livingstone, Sonia ORCID: 0000-0002-3248-9862 (1988) Why people watch soap opera: an analysis of the explanations of British viewers. European Journal of Communication, 3 (1). pp. 55-80. ISSN 0267-3231

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Identification Number: 10.1177/0267323188003001004


The high popularity of soap opera raises important questions about viewers' involvement with the genre. British viewers' explanations for watching soap opera are shown to concern escapism, realism, relationship with characters, critical response, problem-solving, role in viewer's life, emotional experience and entertainment. These are discussed in relation to research on critical response to the media, the expressed aims of soap opera producers, uses and gratifications research and perceived differences between British and American programmes. That viewers take soap opera seriously, and consider that the characters and problems portrayed are highly realistic and personally involving, has implications for issues of media effects.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 1988 The Author
Divisions: Media and Communications
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
H Social Sciences > HE Transportation and Communications
Date Deposited: 15 Dec 2016 10:47
Last Modified: 17 Feb 2021 10:58

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