Fragments of Yugoslav Socialist Modernity of the 1970ies in the TV-series Theatre at Home

  • Ildiko Erdei Department of Ethnology and Anthropology Faculty of Philosophy University of Belgrade
Keywords:
TV-series, television, socialist modernity

Abstract

 The object of analysis is a TV-series "Theatre at home", which had a long TV-life (three seasons in 1970ies and two in 1980ies) and was one of the most popular series in the socialist Yugoslavia. The series covers daily life in an ordinary Yugoslav family, based in Belgrade, and the plot is built around the humorously articulated tensions and conflicts between the main protagonist and his mother in law who lives with him, his wife and their son. The material analysed includes the episodes of the three seasons broadcasted during the seventies (1972, 1973, 1975), written sources (newspaper articles about the TV show and its main protagonists and archival documents related to the author of the show Novak Novak) and secondary literature related to the development of Yugoslav RTV. Relying on theoretical and methodological propositions of Lilla Abu Lughod on the relationship between  production, distribution and consumption of TV-serials and broader processes as building of a nation, modernization or urbanization, I try to show how the TV-series "Theatre at home" simultaneously described and proscribed how the socialist modern life in Yugoslavia should look like, thus serving as an implicit tool of social pedagogy. At the same time, it offered an opportunity for the audience-consumers-citizens to engage with the "real" achievements and manifestations of the socialist modernity represented in the series, which thus came to be continuously re-evaluated and historically situated.

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Published
2017-08-30
How to Cite
Erdei, Ildiko. 2017. “Fragments of Yugoslav Socialist Modernity of the 1970ies in the TV-Series Theatre at Home”. Issues in Ethnology and Anthropology 12 (2), 537–563. https://doi.org/https://doi.org/10.21301/eap.v12i2.9.

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