In this completely revised and updated edition (including eight new chapters), Jeffrey Jones charts the evolution and maturation of political entertainment television by examining The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, The Colbert Report, Politically Incorrect/Real Time with Bill Maher, and Michael Moore's TV Nation and The Awful Truth. This volume investigates how and why these shows have been central locations for the critique of political and economic power and an important resource for citizens during numerous political crises. In an age of Truthiness, fake news and humorous political talk have proven themselves viable forms of alternative reporting and critical means for ascertaining truth, and in the process, questioning the legitimacy of news media's role as the primary mediator of political life. The book also addresses the persistent claims that these programs have cynical effects and create misinformed young citizens, demonstrating instead how such programming provides for an informed, active, and meaningful citizenship. The new edition takes account of the many changes that have occurred in television and political culture since Entertaining Politics' initial release.
Jeffrey P Jones —
Jeffrey P. Jones is associate professor of communication at Old Dominion University.
Jones, Jeffrey P. Entertaining politics: satiric television and political engagement. 2nd ed. Rowman & Littlefield, 2010. 311p index afp; ISBN 9780742565272. Reviewed in 2010aug CHOICE.
This is a second edition--heavily revised and updated--of a book about entertainment television political programming as an integral part of US political culture and, increasingly, of US electoral politics and governance. Jones (communications, Old Dominion Univ.) makes the case that Americans are eager to approach politics in creative ways and that politics can be "pleasurable," engaging a large number of people in ways that traditional broadcast news and commentary do not. He tries to debunk the claim that political satire diminishes political engagement, questions the "reality" of conventional television news, and argues that the new political entertainment television has become a powerful means for challenging and questioning conventional political and economic processes and leaders. The book covers the gamut of television entertainment programming, featuring such luminaries as Jon Stewart, Bill Maher, Stephen Colbert, and Michael Moore, with in-depth examination of them and their shows as well as recent events, including the 2008 presidential election, that have been their focus. CNN in particular and other television news coverage, as well as other television entertainment broadcasting, also receive coverage. The book is annotated and could serve as supplementary reading for courses in US electoral politics, communications and politics, and mass media.
Summing Up: Recommended. All readership levels. -- P. Regenstreif, University of Rochester