1st Edition

Transnational Latin American Television Genres, Formats and Adaptations

By Nahuel Ribke Copyright 2021
    150 Pages
    by Routledge

    150 Pages
    by Routledge

    This book examines the process of transnationalization of Latin American television industries. Drawing upon six representative case studies spanning the subcontinent’s vast and diverse geo-political and cultural landscape, the book offers a unique exploration of the ongoing formation of interrelated cultural, technological, and political landscapes, from the mid-1980s to the present.

    The chapters analyse the international circulation of the genres and formats of entertainment television across the subcontinent to explore the main driving forces propelling the production and consumption of television contents in the region, and what we can learn about the cultural and social identities of Latin American audiences following the journey of genres, formats, and media personalities beyond their own national borders.

    Taking a contemporary interdisciplinary approach to the study of transnational television industries, this book will be of significant interest to scholars and students of television and film studies, communication studies, Latin American studies, global media studies, and media and cultural industries.

    Preface vii

    1 Latin American transnational television: a historical and sociocultural perspective 1

    2 Transnational television and the making of Spanishspeaking Latino and Latin American audiences: Sábado Gigante and the politics and economy of subaltern representation 16

    3 Neo-orientalist telenovelas and transnational business in Brazilian television (2002–2012) 32

    4 Back to the past? Dizis in Latin America, the familiarity of the exotic (2014–2019) 49

    5 Simulating difference, representing “quality”: Los Simuladores’ pioneering transition from Argentina to Mexico, Chile, and Spain (2002–2003) 67

    6 South American adaptations of “In Treatment”: “quality” TV fiction, glocal forms of prestige, and north-south cultural dialogues (2009–2012) 85

    7 Latin American television series on Netflix, local audiences, and the global search for the “authentic-exotic” 102

    Conclusions 119

    Bibliography 123

    Index 133


    Nahuel Ribke is Lecturer at Seminar Hakibbutzim College and Research Associate at the Sverdlin Institute for Latin American History and Culture at Tel Aviv University, Israel.

    "The case studies that Ribke brings up throughout the book are approached with enormous rigour in terms of research and theoretical argument and this is one of the main strengths of this work. 

    Furthermore, one of the most interesting aspects of the book is Ribke’s ambition to reflect on the complex political, cultural and geographical characteristics of Latin America as a heterogeneous and diverse region."

    -- Juan-Pablo Osman, Universidad del Norte, Barranquilla, Colombia


    "Nahuel Ribke’s book refreshes the literature on transnational media flows in Ibero- America, presenting a well-organised line of inquiry. It starts with a chapter that examines the historical evolution of television in the region over a six-decade period. In this part, Ribke identifies market size and hierarchies, intraregional political context, imagined and/or real ethnic and cultural barriers and class structures shaping national television experiences.

    Based on his collection of case studies, Ribke concludes that production, circulation, and consumption of transnational television in Latin America is intense even if content flows tend to be fractured by the challenges of adaptation, and certain intra- regional protectionist biases that make national broadcasters more likely to adopt north-to-south, rather than south-to-south television flows. Such pattern of ‘fragmented unity’ or ‘ambivalent integration’ (119) is characterised by a global media market logic that is sensitive to competition from neighbours, open to imports that make business sense, while orbiting around the likes of Netflix and ‘other American
    national media corporations’"

    -- Gabriel Moreno-Esparza, Northumbria University, UK