Fighting the Forces: What's at Stake in Buffy the Vampire Slayer by Rhonda V. Wilcox | Hardcover | Barnes & Noble
Fighting The Forces

Fighting The Forces

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by Rhonda Wilcox
     
 

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For every television series, the original vision grows within a press of forces-both social and artistic expectations, conventions of the business, as well as conventions of the art. Bad television—predictable, commercial, exploitative—simply yields to the forces. Good television, like the character of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, fights them. Fighting the

Overview

For every television series, the original vision grows within a press of forces-both social and artistic expectations, conventions of the business, as well as conventions of the art. Bad television—predictable, commercial, exploitative—simply yields to the forces. Good television, like the character of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, fights them. Fighting the Forces explores the struggle to create meaning in an impressive example of popular culture, the television series phenomenon Buffy the Vampire Slayer. In the essays collected here, contributors examine the series using a variety of techniques and viewpoints. They analyze the social and cultural issues implicit in the series and place it in its literary context, not only by examining its literary influences (from German liebestod to Huckleberry Finn) but also by exploring the series' purposeful literary allusions. Furthermore, the book explores the extratextual, such as fanfiction and online discussion groups. The book is additionally supplemented by an online journal Slayage (www.slayage.tv), created by the book editors in acknowledgement of the ongoing nature of television art. Rhonda V. Wilcox and David Lavery have written and edited several books and articles exploring the social, literary, and artistic merit of quality television. In addition to Buffy the Vampire Slayer, their work has covered a variety of programs including Twin Peaks, Northern Exposure, The X-Files, and The Sopranos.

Editorial Reviews

The New York Observer
All 'Buffy' books are not created equal. Anyone interested in delving into the issues raised by the show (including what constitutes feminism, how we can define 'the other,' and whether the world can be reduced with Manichaean simplicity to the battle between good and evil) should invest in Fighting the Forces.
Rain Taxi Review Of Books
Fighting the Forces is a solid collection and shows how much substance there is to a show that to the casual observer might seem campy and shallow.
The Austin Chronicle Screens
A collection of scholarly essays treats the show with the serious attention fans have long known it was worthy of. Although the essays take an academic approach, the arcane jargon is nearly absent, yet each essay offers a serious, entertaining perspective on the social, literary, and artistic aspects of Buffy.
Science Fiction Research Association Review
The twenty essays collected in Fighting the Forces, and others available on its companion website www.slayage.tv, demonstrate a higher level of critical rigor and quality of writing.
Science Fiction Studies
Will appeal to the more intellectual of the show's core teenage constituency, helping empower them with respect to the often crypto-vampiric institution of academia.
The Whitehorse Star
[The book] contains 20 essays organized into three overlapping sections, all of which deal quite seriously and affectionately with aspects of this silly-sounding but quite seriously-written program.
Sharon R. Mazzarella
In giving 'Buffy the Vampire Slayer' the academic attention it so deserves, Fighting the Forces: What's at Stake in Buffy the Vampire Slayer acknowledges the richness and complexity of the program. Be advised, however, that it is not simply a rah-rah, Buffy is great lovefest. Rather, it is a thought-provoking deconstruction of 'Buffy the Vampire Slayer' as text that is sure to be of interest to both scholars and fans alike. Taken together, the essays in this book provide insight into what is at once a complicated yet underrated program. Like the program itself, Fighting the Forces gives the reader, if you'll pardon my pun, a lot to sink her/his teeth into!
Robert Thompson
Race, gender, religion, history, music, technology: who would've thought you could deliver an entire liberal arts curriculum by talking about nothing but Buffy? Rhonda Wilcox and David Lavery, important voices in contemporary television studies, have gathered a compelling set of essays that make up one of the best books available about a single TV series. The scholarship is sophisticated, but the prose is readable and amusing. The volume avoids both the slobbering panegyrics of fan books and the incomprehensible jargon of so many academic books. Including the introduction and afterword there are 22 chapters: read one a week and it'll last the whole TV season.
Rambles.NET - Laurie Thayer
Fascinating reading which provides a deeper understanding of the richly detailed Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
Booknews
Wilcox (English, Gordon College) and Lavery (English, Middle Tennessee State U.) present a series of 20 critical essays exploring a range of issues raised by the popular television show and fan reaction to it. A selection of essays look at issues of race, gender, age, class, and religion as exhibited in the show, while others discuss the origins of vampires and monsters and their treatments on the show. Also included is an episode guide for the first five seasons of the show. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
Rambles
Fascinating reading which provides a deeper understanding of the richly detailed Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
— Laurie Thayer

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780742516809
Publisher:
Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
Publication date:
02/28/2002
Pages:
322
Product dimensions:
0.88(w) x 9.00(h) x 6.00(d)

Meet the Author

Rhonda V. Wilcox is professor of English at Gordon College. David Lavery is professor of English at Middle Tennessee State University. Rhonda V. Wilcox and David Lavery have written and edited several books and articles exploring the social, literary, and artistic merit of quality television. In addition to Buffy the Vampire Slayer, their work has covered a variety of programs including Twin Peaks, Nothern Exposure, The X-Files, and The Sopranos.

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