Class Divisions in Serial Television

  • Sieglinde Lemke
  • Wibke Schniedermann

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-vii
  2. Sieglinde Lemke, Wibke Schniedermann
    Pages 1-17
  3. (Di)Vision: “Lower” Class Televisibility

  4. Di*Visions: Screening Exploitation, Neoliberal Lies, and Class Realignment

  5. Back Matter
    Pages 207-213

About this book


This book brings the emergent interest in social class and inequality to the field of television studies. It reveals how the new visibility of class matters in serial television functions aesthetically and examines the cultural class politics articulated in these programmes. This ground-breaking volume argues that reality and quality TV’s intricate politics of class entices viewers not only to grapple with previously invisible socio-economic realities but also to reconsider their class alignment. The stereotypical ways of framing class are now supplemented by those dedicated to exposing the economic and socio-psychological burdens of the (lower) middle class. The case studies in this book demonstrate how sophisticated narrative techniques coincide with equally complex ways of exposing class divisions in contemporary American life and how the examined shows disrupt the hegemonic order of class. The volume therefore also invites a rethinking of conventional models of social stratification. 


Serial television class media framing post-financial crisis precarity reality TV quality TV cultural class studies representation cultural politics of class class alignment television studies viewer response redneck welfare queen hillbilly subscription television The Wire Breaking Bad Here Comes Honey Booboo

Editors and affiliations

  • Sieglinde Lemke
    • 1
  • Wibke Schniedermann
    • 2
  1. 1.University of Freiburg FreiburgGermany
  2. 2.Gießen University GießenGermany

Bibliographic information