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British Cinema and Television 1960-85


  • Credit value: 30 credits at Level 7
  • Convenor: Dr Mike Allen
  • Assessment: an essay of 5000 words (100%)

Module description

In this module we look at changes and developments in both British cinema and British television, and at the links and separations between the two media, during the 1960s and 1970s. Each weekly session will explore one aspect of the subject in an attempt to understand the specificities of the two media within a British social, political and cultural context.

British society and culture underwent substantial change between 1960 and 1980. Having recovered from the Second World War and entered a period of relative prosperity, new opportunities and possibilities were opening up for the British public. The first decade under scrutiny has gone down in popular history as 'The Swinging Sixties' and saw the emergence of The Beatles as a world phenomenon; the second ended with the explosion of punk rock and its attendant youth rebellion. Censorship was relaxed, but the waves of immigration in the 1950s left a racial tension that needed to be addressed.

These issues will be examined in reference to specific television and film texts.

Indicative syllabus

  • An introduction to post-war British society
  • The Kitchen Sink films and TV dramas
  • The Swinging Sixties
  • America and Britain
  • TV single dramas
  • Censorship
  • Film and TV comedy
  • Educational television
  • Youth in film and TV
  • Channel Four and Film Four