Cover image for Growing up with television : everyday learning among young adolescents
Growing up with television : everyday learning among young adolescents
Fisherkeller, JoEllen, 1952-
Publication Information:
Philadelphia, PA : Temple University Press, [2002]

Physical Description:
xi, 210 pages ; 24 cm

Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
HQ799.2.T4 F57 2002 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

On Order



Why talk with young people about TV? This is the question from which JoEllen Fisherkeller begins her insightful examination into the uses and power of TV in youth cultures.Fisherkeller studies the experiences of adolescents watching TV and talking about TV at home, at school, and with their peers. They discuss their hopes for the future as well as the challenges they currently face, and reveal how television plays a role in their everyday life. These young individuals, who come from a wide range of backgrounds, literally grow up with television, as the author follows them from middle school to high school and then on to college.As the most significant cultural symbol in the US, television is a powerful educational and socializing force. Fisherkeller examines how youth are attracted to TV programs and persona that help them work through personal and social dilemmas. TV stories teach them about conflicts of gender, race and class that parallel the lessons they learn from real life and the system of television show them how image creation is a real means of making it in an image-conscious society.Growing Up with Television is a groundbreaking book that should speak to a multitude of disciplines on the educative and societal power of a medium that pervades and defines contemporary experience.

Author Notes

JoEllen Fisherkeller is an Associate Professor in the Department of Culture and Communication at New York University

Reviews 2

Booklist Review

At first glance, this appears to be yet another feel-good book of stories about animals. It is, however, an academic study of the interactions between cats and their human caregivers at a no-kill shelter. The authors, both professors of sociology, based the book on four years of observations conducted while they volunteered at the shelter. They watched the cats form relationships, surveyed the socialization of previously feral cats, and both observed and interviewed the shelter volunteers. The Algers, animal rights activists and owners of multiple cats themselves, follow a model of participant observation, which allows researchers to develop close relationships with their subjects. The result is an interesting mix of academic protocol and illustrative stories. Within a scholarly framework, the Algers discuss such subjects as cat friendships, how the resident cats deal with new arrivals, or how the cats "train" the volunteers, fleshing out their points with excerpts from their field notes. Copious chapter notes and a lengthy bibliography offer further research for interested readers. This highly readable work will appeal to all cat owners. NancyBent.

Choice Review

Fisherkeller (culture and communication, New York Univ.) makes an important contribution to discussion about the impact of television on young people. The author interviewed adolescents in an alternative middle school in New York City and gives detailed profiles of three subjects and their television viewing. She provides a context for the children's comments on television, relating their viewing to circumstances of their school and home lives. She did follow-up interviews with these young people three and eight years later, so one can see the progression of their development and the effect television has on their ideas of themselves and the world. Fisherkeller offers a convincing analysis of the role of the media in the development of her subjects as unique individuals. Like many investigators, she does not see the audience as a passive recipient of the limited messages offered by corporate television. She points out that viewers are more perceptive than many critics believe. The author's account of her research and its theoretical base is clear, her points are persuasive, and the voices of the young people are enlightening. Enhanced by an excellent bibliography, a media glossary, and methodological and chapter notes, this volume is highly recommended for students of sociology as well as communication, upper-division undergraduate level and above. S. Sugarman Bennington College

Table of Contents

Acknowledgmentsp. ix
Introductionp. 1
1 Coming to Terms with TV Culture and Everyday Learningp. 9
2 Marina--Composing Images of Popularity and Sexual Powerp. 33
3 Christopher--Settling into Images of Belonging and Righteous Powerp. 57
4 Samantha--Pondering Images of Political and Vocal Powerp. 78
5 The Dynamics of Everyday Learningp. 101
6 The Dilemmas of Growing up with Multiple Media and Culturesp. 117
Epilogue--Marina, Christopher and Samantha, Continuedp. 133
Appendix Methodological Notesp. 155
Notesp. 167
Media Glossaryp. 171
Works Citedp. 197
Indexp. 205