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Drama production and audiences as ‘affective superaddressee’ in an illiberal democracy

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<mark>Journal publication date</mark>31/08/2022
<mark>Journal</mark>European Journal of Cultural Studies
Issue number4
Number of pages17
Pages (from-to)1066-1082
Publication StatusPublished
Early online date20/04/21
<mark>Original language</mark>English


There is a long history of television and film research that highlights the essential roles audiences play in everyday production decisions. Based largely on Western media industries, these studies’ investigations of producer–audience relationships have revolved predominantly around the market concerns of liberal media models. So how do producer–audience relationships work when it comes to illiberal contexts of media production? Using Singapore as a case study, this article argues that existing approaches to producer–audience relations largely based on liberal media industries like Hollywood are insufficient for thinking through audience power in everyday media production in illiberal contexts. Drawing on insights from affect theory, I examine the materials gathered during an immersive ethnography of the writing process of a Singaporean television drama and propose conceptualizing audiences as an ‘affective superaddressee’, as a productive way to think about the work that situational audiences do in everyday media production in illiberal contexts.