Broadcast Technology, Household Space and Domestic Time — The Theoretical Arguments and Perspectives in British Media and Cultural Studies


Ting-Huei Chao


In the two decades, broadcast technology and domestic life has become a new academic field in British media and cultural studies. The most important issue in this research area is the dialectic relation ship between broadcast technology, household space and domestic time. Based on this debate, researchers are eager to understand the process of domestication of broadcast technology. The purpose of this paper is to review and to criticise the theoretical arguments as well as perspectives in this field. Firstly, this paper explores the impact on domestic life in the industrialised society because of the arrival of broadcast technology. It especially concentrates on the enlightenment of R. Williams and A. Giddens. Secondly, with the concept of moral economy that R. Silverstone borrowed from E.P.Thompson, this paper discusses the relationship between broadcast technology and household space, and the relationship between the use of broadcast technology and domestic time. Finally, this paper points out, except the theoretical arguments, the research targets for future studies could extend to other information and communication technologies – computer, VCRs, cable and satellite television, for example, to understand how these technologies are integrated into everyday life through domestic consumption.