Lifestyle Media in American Culture: Gender, Class, and the Politics of Ordinariness, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Lifestyle Media in American Culture

Gender, Class, and the Politics of Ordinariness, 1st Edition

By Maureen E. Ryan


216 pages | 16 B/W Illus.

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Hardback: 9781138206465
pub: 2018-02-12
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This book explores the emergence of "lifestyle" in the US, first as a term that has become an organizing principle for the self and for the structure of everyday life, and later as a pervasive form of media that encompasses a variety of domestic and self-improvement genres, from newspaper columns to design blogs. Drawing on the methodologies of cultural studies and feminist media studies, and built upon a series of case studies from newspapers, books, television programs, and blogs, it tracks the emergence of lifestyle’s discursive formation and shows its relevance in contemporary media culture. It is, in the broadest sense, about the role played by the explosion of lifestyle media texts in changing conceptualizations of selfhood and domestic life.

Table of Contents

Introduction: A Better Everyday Is Waiting for You

1. Life-Style: The History of an Idea

2. Empires of the Everyday: Gender, Entertaining, and the Emergence of Lifestyle Media

3. Logics of Lifestyle: Cable, Class, and Domesticity on HGTV and the Food Network

4. The Trading Spaces Train Wreck: Blandness and Lifestyle Anxiety on TLC

5. Fantasies of Production: Digital Lifestyle Media and Women’s Work

Conclusion: Lifestyle Unmoored

About the Author

Maureen E. Ryan is an instructor in media and cinema studies at DePaul University, USA. She is the co-editor, with Jessalynn Keller, of the collection Emergent Feminisms: Complicating a Postfeminist Media Culture.

About the Series

Routledge Research in Gender, Sexuality, and Media

The aim of this series is to publish original research in the areas of feminist and queer media studies, with a particular but not exclusive focus on gender and sexuality. In doing so, this series brings to the market cutting-edge critical work that refreshes, reshapes, and redirects scholarship in these related fields while contributing to a better global understanding of how gender and sexual politics operate within historical and current mediascapes.

Affirming the integrated, multiperspectival approach associated with Cultural Studies, the series publishes richly contextualized research that explores gender and sexual politics not only in media texts but also in the practices of media production and consumption. Media are defined broadly in this series, as the books within it expand beyond these fields' historical focus on film and television to engage with other forms of media, including video games, popular music, and digital media. Books in the series centering on current media culture also explore the complexly transmedial, convergent, and participatory nature of popular culture today. Gender is configured broadly in this series also, and a key contribution is a further complicating of how multiple, intersecting modes of identity impact media representation, as well as the creation, distribution, publicity, and consumption of mediated texts.

For more information or to discuss a project, please contact Mary Celeste Kearney, [email protected]

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Feminism & Feminist Theory
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Popular Culture
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Women's Studies
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Gender Studies
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Media Studies