I studied English and Media studies (BA) at the University of Sussex, then gained an MA in film from the University of Southampton. I then undertook a PhD on the subject of British film and television in the 1950s (also at the University of Southampton), specifically the early relations between the two media, in the form of the first ‘cinema programmes’ on television. In my first full-time teaching job at the Southampton Institute (now Southampton Solent University) I taught Media and Cultural studies, before moving on to teach television and film at the University of Kent. I joined UEA as Reader in Television in 2007, where I primarily teach in the areas of television history, popular television and historical/ contemporary celebrity.
My research focuses on British television history (especially the 1950s), contemporary television genres (such Reality TV and quiz shows), and the subject of celebrity. In my historical research on British television (British TV and Film in the 1950s, Entertaining TV: the BBC and Popular Programme Culture in the 1950s), I have been keen to challenge received ideas about British television history, whether with regard to its relations with the film industry in the early years, or the canonical ideas about early BBC television rejecting notions of the ‘popular’. With regard to British reality TV, I have examined aspects of historical development, issues of generic labeling and circulation, and questions of celebrity. In addition to this, my work on celebrity has aimed to contribute to historical knowledge about British television and celebrity, as well as the relationship between celebrity and femininity. I also co-edit the Routledge journal Celebrity Studies.
I am interested in supervising postgraduate research in a broad range of areas, whether popular television, the intersection between television/ film history, and issues of stardom/celebrity.
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Celebrity Studies in rude health
in Celebrity Studies
pp. 113-114Full Text UEA Repository
'Whoever heard of anyone being a screaming success for doing nothing?': 'Sabrina', the BBC and television fame in the 1950s
in Media History
pp. 33-48Full Text UEA Repository
In the Limelight and Under the Microscope: Forms and Functions of Female Celebrity
ISBN 978-0826438553UEA Repository
Big Brother RIP
in Celebrity Studies
pp. 214-217Full Text UEA Repository
The "Place" of television in Celebrity Studies
in Celebrity Studies
pp. 65-80UEA Repository
Reality TV and 'Ordinary' People: Re-visiting Celebrity, Performance and Authenticity
In: Trans-Reality Television: The Transgression of Reality, Genre, Politics and Audience.
ISBN 978-0-7391-3188-6UEA Repository
Jade's back and this time she's famous: Narratives of Celebrity in the Celebrity Big Brother 'race' row
in Entertainment and Sports Law Journal
Television Talent Shows. ‘”Thank You, Voters”: Approaching the Audience for Music and Television in the Reality-Pop Phenomenon
In: Sound and Music in Film and Visual Media A Critical Overview A Critical Overview.
ISBN 9780826458247UEA Repository
This outlet for criticism could ginger up the whole climate in which television is watched: (Re)viewing Points of View - Audience, Access and Participation
in Critical Studies in Television
pp. 4-25UEA Repository
The television audience cannot be expected to bear too much reality…The Family (BBC, 1974) and Reality TV
In: The Tube Has Spoken, Reality TV as History.
University Press of Kentucky
ISBN 978-0813125534UEA Repository
Going Cheap? Female Celebrity in the Tabloid, Reality and Scandal Genres
in Genders www.genders.orgUEA Repository
Riveting and Real - a family in the raw:(Re)visiting The Family (1974) after Reality TV
in International Journal of Cultural Studies
pp. 193-210UEA Repository
'An unmarried mother sat in a wing-backed chair on TV last night…' BBC asks Is This Your Problem? (1955-57)
in Television and New Media
pp. 175-196Full Text UEA Repository
Ask the fastidious woman from Surbiton to hand-wash the underpants of the ageing Oldham skinhead…': Why not Wife Swap?
In: Rethinking Documentary: A Documentary Reader.
Open University Press
ISBN 0335221912UEA Repository
Entertaining Television: The BBC and Popular Television Culture in the 1950's
Manchester University Press
ISBN 9780719077913UEA Repository
Outrageously Bad Taste: The BBC, the Critics and the Controversy over This is Your Life in the 1950's
In: Narrating Media History.
ISBN 978-0415419161UEA Repository
The Quiz Show
Edinburgh University Press
ISBN 9780748627523UEA Repository
A Term Rather Too General to be Helpful': Struggling with Genre in Reality TV
In: The Shifting Definitions of Genre, Generic Canons.
ISBN 0786434309UEA Repository
'The viewers have ... taken over the airwaves'? Participation, reality TV and approaching the audience-in-the-text
pp. 13-31UEA Repository
The BBC and Television Fame in the 1950's: Living with The Grove Family (1954-7) and going Face to Face (1959-62) with television
in European Journal of Cultural Studies
pp. 427-446Full Text UEA Repository
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Key Research Interests
Research interests - British television history (especially the 1950s), contemporary television genres (especially Reality TV and quiz shows), and the subject of celebrity.
Co-editor and co-founder of the Routledge journal Celebrity Studies http://www.tandfonline.com/loi/rcel20
- Co-editor (with Dr Deborah Jermyn) of the 'TV Genres' book series for Edinburgh University Press
- Member of the Editorial Board for the journal Critical Studies in Television
- External examiner for the BA (Hons) Television Studies degree at the University of Surrey,
- External examiner for the MA in Film and Television at the University of Warwick (2008-10)
Dr Holmes is currently the PGR (PhD) Director for FTM, and teaches on all levels of the UG degrees, and was the co-organiser (with Professor Diane Negra) of the FTV symposium: 'Going Cheap?: Female Celebrity in the Tabloid, Reality and Scandal Genres', a one-day event held at UEA on Wednesday 25th June 2008.