Journal Articles

Gray, J. and Lotz, A. D. (2013).  “A Robust and Dynamic Field.” Media, Culture & Society, 35.8: 1019-1022.


Lotz, A. D. (2013). Review Essay: “Television 2013.” Cinema Journal 52.3: 190-7.

Lotz, A. D. (2013). “What Old Media Can Teach New Media,” in online support materials for Spreadable Media, by Henry Jenkins, Sam Ford, and Joshua Green (New York: New York University Press).

Draper, J. and A. D. Lotz, (2012). “Making Sense of Homophobia in Rescue Me: ‘Working Through’ as Ideological StrategyTelevision and New Media 13(6): 520-34.

This article considers the ideological significance of homophobic discourse as part of a sophisticated interrogation of homophobic outlooks in the FX series Rescue Me. It posits that a variety of narrative features enable a strategy of “working through” in which characters’ frank conversations and evolving perspectives depict the process of experiencing ideological challenge. Working through emphasizes the need for scholars to fully explore the internally contradictory narratives that are characteristic of the increasing complexity of some television storytelling and defies norms of critical media analysis that argue particular media texts either reinforce or resist dominant ideology. Cogent examination of other instances of working through could reinvigorate stymied intellectual spaces by insisting that scholars consider characters’ process of struggle with ideological perspectives throughout the unfolding of a series.

Lotz, A. D. (2011). “Television Studies?Critical Studies in Television 6.1: 110-11.

Lotz, A. D. (2010). “US Television and the Recession: Impetus for Change?Popular Communication: International Journal of Media and Culture 8.3: 186-9.

Havens, T., A. D. Lotz, and S. Tinic. (2009). “Critical Media Industry Studies: A Research Approach.” Communication, Culture and Critique 2: 234-53.

This article identifies the primary features of what we term ‘‘critical media industry studies,’’ emphasizing midlevel fieldwork in examining media industries and delimiting new ways of understanding, conceiving, and studying media industries from a critical perspective. We provide a general framework for the nascent yet growing body of work that locates industry research on particular organizations, agents, and practices within vast media conglomerates operating at a global level. We mark out the most general boundaries of such an endeavor by synthesizing the extant research in critical media industry studies, the ways in which concepts and methods of cultural studies have been adapted to the study of industry practices, and address the main gaps and trajectories of such research.

Lotz, A. D. (2009). “Interactive TV Too Early: The False Start of QUBE.” The Velvet Light Trap 64: 106-7.

Lotz, A. D. (2009). “What is U.S. Television Now.” Special Issue, Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science: End of Television?: Its Impact on the World (So Far), eds. Elihu Katz and Paddy Scannell.

This article explores the institutional adjustments that have altered the operation of the U.S. television industry over the past twenty years. The author first chronicles those industrial norms that characterized television during its “network era” (1952 to mid-1980s) and upon which most ideas about the role of television in society are based. She then explores the ways in which adjustments in technologies, industrial formations, governmental policies, practices of looking, and textual formations have redefined the norms of television in the United States since the mid-1980s. Analysis of the shifts in the institutional and cultural functions of television reveals the articulations between the dominant industrial practices and the forms, texts, and cultural role of the medium. Such conceptions of shifts of the medium allows us to understand recent changes as an evolution of this central cultural medium rather than its demise.

Lotz, A. D. (2008). “On “Television Criticism”: The Pursuit of the Critical Examination of a Popular Art.” Popular Communication: International Journal of Media and Culture 6.1: 20-36.

“Television criticism” occupies an uncertain place relative to other critical traditions and the sociological frameworks through which critics’ roles have been studied relative to cultural production. Those who write daily columns about television play an important role in cultural production despite the differentiation of the television critic, the outlets in which they write, and the challenges of writing about a predominantly commercial form. This article examines the historical development of journalistic television criticism in the United States, including the establishment of the Television Critics Association (TCA), which has served as a significant organization in countering networks’ efforts to control critical assessments of television. The article draws from a rich early literature that examined the work of critics in television’s initial years as well as interviews with critics who have written about the medium for the past two decades, and a three-week participant observation of the TCA press tour.

Lotz, A. D. (2008). “New Media Policy?Journal of E-Media Studies 1.1.

Lotz, A. D.  (2007). “How to Spend $9.3 Billion in Three Days: Examining the Upfront Buying Process in the Production of US Television Culture.”  Media, Culture and Society 29.4: 549-67.

This article investigates on the upfront buying process in the production of U.S. television culture. The overwhelmingly commercial television industry in the U.S. relies on the sale of commercial time to support the production and distribution costs of nearly all the television content watched by the country’s viewers. It uses observation of a media buying agency during the 2005 upfront buying process, and interviews with media buyers and planners to explain and analyze the importance of the upfront buying process to the cultural production of the U.S. television industry.

Lotz, A. D. (2007).  “The Promotional Role of the Network Upfront Presentations in the Production of Culture.”  Television & New Media 8.1: 3-24.

This article explores the Upfront presentations made by United States broadcasters to the media-buying community each year to analyze the complicated economic and cultural functions of promotional processes that occur before programs ever reach the viewing audience. The analysis draws from observation of Upfront presentations, triangulated with analysis of trade press articles and interviews, to present a comprehensive examination of this component of promotion within the circuit of cultural production. Examining the promotional activities that occur before programming reaches audiences illustrates the dual client nature of the United States commercial television industry, and the different strategies evinced indicate the need to theorize internal promotion distinctly from the pro- motion of texts and networks to audiences. Additionally, the variant promotional strategies used by different networks in this internal venue reveal institutional priorities in audience composition and brand differentiation among networks.

Lotz, A. D.  (2005). “Seventeen Days In July at Hollywood and Highland: Examining the Television Critics Association Tour.” Journal of Popular Film and Television 33.1: 22-28 .

Through collective organization, the Television Critics Association forced the networks to evolve what were once network-funded and network-controlled junkets into a rich journalistic opportunity that the TCA controls. The author explores the TCA tour and continued challenges to the organization and the place it has established in cultural production.

Lotz, A. D.  (2004).  “Using ‘Network’ Theory in the Post-Network Era: Fictional 9/11 U.S. Television Discourse as a ‘Cultural Forum.’” Screen 45.4: 423-439.

This article explores how the concept of the cultural forum can be adjusted to make it useful in the context of post-network television’s abundance. Discourse about 9/11 in American drama series are used as a case example.

Lotz, A. D. (2004).  “Textual (Im)Possibilities in the U.S. Post-Network Era: Negotiating Production and Promotion Processes on Lifetime’s Any Day Now.”  Critical Studies in Media Communication 21.1: 22-43.  Reprinted in Television: The Critical View, 7th ed. edited by Horace Newcomb (New York: Oxford University Press, 2007), 223-44.

This essay explores the struggles experienced in the creation, production, and promotion of a U.S. television series that deliberately sought to encourage cultural reflection about ethnic diversity and defied industrial norms as an original narrative program produced for a cable network. Any Day Now (1998–2002) was the first successful original series produced for the Lifetime Television network and was one of the first successful original cable series. Through an analysis of the production process, interviews with the creators and writers of the series, and examination of the series’ promotion, this essay explores how the transition to a post-network era of industrial organization and competitive practice affected the production and promotion of the series and its narratives. These findings are informative both in terms of the specific case and as they might be extrapolated as characteristic of the development of the post-network era.

Lotz, A. D. and S. M. Ross.  (2004).  “Bridging Media Specific Approaches: The Value of Feminist Television Criticism.”  Feminist Media Studies 4.2: 187-204.

This article traces the development of feminist television criticism as a dynamic and independent area of study and argues that its theoretical complexity can be traced to the incorporation of multiple intellectual influences including feminist film criticism, British cultural studies, and feminist-inflected mass communication research. The approaches and methods central to feminist television criticism illuminate factors related to theorizing institutions and industry, neither of which has occupied a persistently central place in U.S. feminist film studies.

Lotz, A. D. and S. M. Ross.  (2004).  “Toward Ethical Cyberspace Audience Research: Strategies for Using the Internet for Television Audience Studies.”  Journal of Broadcasting & Electronic Media 48.3: 501-13.

This article examines the possibilities for qualitative audience study afforded by the Internet, carefully detailing both the benefits and dangers of such research. In answer to methodological issues resulting from online communication with subjects, the essay calls for the application of various feminist and anthropological methodological practices, and considers methodological dilemmas related to perceived privacy, natural data and lurking, informed consent procedures, balancing anonymity, and data accessibility. In the course of outlining methodological considerations especially salient when finding audiences through internet spaces, we reflect on our own dilemmas in designing studies that meet the ethical standards of feminist methodology.

Lotz, A. D. (2003).  “Communicating Third-Wave Feminism and New Social Movements: Challenges for the Next Century of Feminist Endeavor.”  Women and Language 26.1: 2-9.

The article explores the various definitions of third-wave feminism emerging in the U.S. in an effort to facilitate feminist theoretical engagement with theories and strategies characteristic of this area of thought. The article distinguishes key differences among ideas labeled “third-wave” feminism, arguing that some are more useful for feminist theory building than others. The article also considers how third-wave feminist ideas may be understood as distinctive of new social movement organization. I argue that feminists must not be misled by simplistic popular media constructions of third-wave feminism, but should consider uses emerging in other national contexts for more productive theory building.