Call for Papers: Edited Collection on Lifetime Television and Movies

full name / name of organization: 
E. Newman
contact email: 
lifetimebook2014@gmail.com

Call for Papers: Edited Collection on Lifetime Television and Movies

Contributions are sought for an interdisciplinary collection of essays on Lifetime Television to be published by McFarland & Co. We are interested in a sustained exploration of the television channel and brand as a cultural phenomenon. Founded in 1984, Lifetime Television’s goal was to provide content appealing to women through a broad range of original programming and syndicated content that stood in opposition to what was offered by other networks. The network’s longtime slogan “Television for Women,” adopted in 1989, distinguished it from its peers, and the network was soon able to draw advertisers with promises of a viewing audience composed of largely middle-class, well-educated women.

Over the years, Lifetime has aired a broad range of films and television shows geared toward women, such as romantic comedies and dramas featuring female protagonists, but the network drew attention for its commitment to programming that addressed serious, challenging issues like domestic violence, cancer, and teen pregnancy – often accompanying them with trigger warnings, information on where to seek help, and even short follow-up documentary features. In recent years, the network has increased their reality programming, capitalizing on the sensationalism of Dance Moms. Competition from Hallmark and other new channels has caused Lifetime to really consider its position in the market and there has been a much greater investment in original programming and promotion in the past few years. How can we reconcile this multifaceted and intriguing line-up? How does Lifetime reflect and shape contemporary American culture?

Possible Topics
- History and identity of the Lifetime Network and/or brand
- Scripted Lifetime television: Any Day Now, Strong Medicine, Drop Dead Diva, The Lottery
- Syndicated programming on Lifetime – what is actually considered television for women?
- How are programs not originally intended for a primarily female audience re-presented on Lifetime?
- The development of Lifetime’s reality programming from Intimate Portrait to Project Runway to True Tori
- Abby Lee and the Dance Moms franchise
- The “Five” films and its impact of female filmmaking
- The implications of the television show My Life is a Lifetime Movie
-- Themes found in Lifetime movies, such as:
● Race and Lifetime
● Tackling LGBT issues
● The accuracy of the “Moment of Truth” movies
● The inspirational Lifetime bio-pic
● Real-life murder
● Christmas and the made-for-TV movie
● Teenage pregnancy
● Cyber crime and adapting to the technological age
● Getting older

Submissions due: October 1, 2014. All submissions must represent previously unpublished work. Please send an abstract of no more than 300 words and CV via email to lifetimebook2014@gmail.com

Selected authors will be notified by November 1, 2014 and will contribute a full length essay of approximately 6000-8000 words by April 1, 2015. All chapters will be reviewed by the editors before submission to the publisher, and potentially subject to further review.

cfp categories: 
american
cultural_studies_and_historical_approaches
film_and_television
gender_studies_and_sexuality
journals_and_collections_of_essays
popular_culture