Audience of one Donald Trump, television, and the fracturing of America

James Poniewozik

Book - 2019

"A generational work that, using television, reframes America's identity through the rattled mind of a septuagenarian, insomniac, cable-news-junkie president. In the tradition of great cultural figures like Marshall McLuhan and Neil Postman, New York Times chief television critic James Poniewozik traces the history of television and mass media from the early 1980s to today, and demonstrates how a "volcanic, camera- hogging antihero" merged with America's most powerful me...dium to become our forty-fifth president. Beginning where Postman left off, Audience of One weaves together two compelling stories. The first charts the seismic evolution of television from a monolithic mass medium, with three mainstream networks, into today's fractious confederation of "spite-and-insult" media subcultures. The second examines Donald Trump himself, who took advantage of these historic changes to constantly reinvent himself: from boastful cartoon zillionaire; to 1990s self-parodic sitcom fixture; to The Apprentice-reality-TV star; and, finally, to Twitter-mad, culture-warring demagogue. A trenchant, often slyly hilarious, work, Audience of One provides an eye- opening history of American media and a sobering reflection of the raucous, "gorillas-are always-fighting" culture we've now become"--

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Subjects
Published
New York, NY : Liveright Publishing Corporation, a division of W.W. Norton & Company [2019]
Edition
First edition
Language
English
Physical Description
xxiii, 325 pages ; 25 cm
Bibliography
Includes bibliographical references (pages [285]-309) and index.
ISBN
9781631494420
Main Author
James Poniewozik (author)
  • Part I: Origin story. Unreal estate ; The least objectionable program ; Monopoly ; As himself
  • Part II: Antihero. The dark side ; Money money money money! ; The paranoid style in America's newsroom ; The most objectionable program
  • Part III: President Television. Red light ; The gorilla channel ; Finale: The idea of a president.