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    Experiments in early US television: windows of opportunities for female technical workers in the 1940s

    Arnold, Sarah (2022) Experiments in early US television: windows of opportunities for female technical workers in the 1940s. Women's History Review, 31 (4). pp. 561-579. ISSN 0961-2025

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    This article examines the case of the Women’s Auxiliary Television Technical Staff (WATTS) of the Chicago television station WBKB: an all-female technical and production crew that operated from 1942 to 1947. In tracing the employment and work of the WATTS, this article examines, firstly, the conditions that enabled women to engage in television technical and production work. Secondly, this article considers the conditions that resulted in decline in the numbers of women working at the station in the post-war period, which were related to men’s return to work after the war, the shift in television’s evolution from experimental to professional and commercial, and, finally, to the gendered culture of work that emerged when men engaged in production work with women. Through an analysis of the trade and popular press discourses that first celebrated women’s television work and later dismissed it, women’s place in the earliest years of television is foregrounded.

    Item Type: Article
    Keywords: Experimental television; WBKB; women; production; WATTS;
    Academic Unit: Faculty of Arts & Humanities > School of English, Media & Theatre Studies > Media Studies
    Item ID: 17838
    Identification Number:
    Depositing User: Sarah Arnold
    Date Deposited: 14 Nov 2023 16:11
    Journal or Publication Title: Women's History Review
    Publisher: Taylor & Francis
    Refereed: Yes
    Use Licence: This item is available under a Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike Licence (CC BY-NC-SA). Details of this licence are available here

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