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Radio Cultures

Keith, Michael C. (ed.)

Radio Cultures

The Sound Medium in American Life

Year of Publication: 2008

New York, Bern, Berlin, Bruxelles, Frankfurt am Main, Oxford, Wien, 2008. XVIII, 351 pp.
ISBN 978-0-8204-8648-2 pb.  (Softcover)
ISBN 978-0-8204-8865-3 hardback  (Hardcover)

Weight: 0.500 kg, 1.102 lbs

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Book synopsis

Radio Cultures examines the manifold ways in which radio has influenced the nation’s social and cultural environment since its inception nearly a century ago. Written by leading scholars in the field, chapters address a wide range of topics, including how this powerful medium has impacted and affected non-mainstream segments of the population throughout its history and how these repressed and neglected groups have employed radio to counter and overcome discrimination and bias. The use of the audio medium for political, economic, and religious purposes is comprehensively probed and analyzed in this insightful and innovative volume.


Contents: Frank Chorba: Foreword – Michael C. Keith: Introduction – Susan Brinson: Radio’s Covenant: The Regulatory Failure of Minority Ownership of Broadcast Radio Facilities – Donald Browne: Speaking in Our Own Tongues: Linguistic Minority Radio in the United States – Roberto Avant-Mier: Heard It on the X: Border Radio As Public Discourse and the Latino Legacy in Popular Music – Bruce Smith: Voices on the Rez: Native American Radio – Donna Halper: Speaking for Themselves: How Radio Brought Women into the Public Sphere – Phylis Johnson: The Howl That Could Not Be Silenced: The Rise of Queer Radio – Larry Miller: Underground Radio: A Voice from the Purple Haze – Tona J. Hangen: Speaking of God, Listening for Grace: Christian Radio and Its Audiences – Elizabeth Fones-Wolf: Broadcasting Unionism: Labor and FM Radio in Postwar America – Corey Flintoff: The Public’s Radio: All Things on the Dial – Louise Benjamin: Indecency and Radio Programming, 1927 to 2000: A Reflection of Their Times – Robert L. Hilliard: Band of Hate: Rancor on the Radio – Peter Laufer: Talk Nation: Turn Down Your Radio – Douglas Craig: Political Waves: Radio and Politics, 1920-1940 – Lawrence C. Soley: Community Renegades: Micro-radio and the Unlicensed Radio Movement – Cindy Welch: Librarians of the Airwaves: Reading in the Ether – Barbara Calabrese: Radio and Culture: The Modern Curriculum – Michael C. Keith: Writing About Radio: A Survey of Cultural Studies in Radio – Christopher H. Sterling: Slow Fade? Seeking Radio’s Future.

About the author(s)/editor(s)

The Editor: Michael C. Keith is a member of the Communication Department at Boston College. He is the author or coauthor of over twenty books including Talking Radio, Voices in the Purple Haze, Sounds in the Dark, and the classic textbook The Radio Station. He is also the author of a critically acclaimed memoir, The Next Better Place: Memories of My Misspent Youth.


«A giant among radio scholars, Michael C. Keith has done it again with a new collection of essays from leading researchers. The depth and breadth of the book’s topics is impressive and meaningful and constitutes an invaluable document for scholars of broadcasting and all who teach and study radio.» (Donald G. Godfrey, Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication, Arizona State University)
«Michael C. Keith, the foremost champion of radio studies, has assembled the pantheon of scholars in the field for this fascinating anthology. Their collective work leaves readers with a heightened sense of the medium’s profound impact in the United States and its reflection of American diversity.» (Mary Ann Watson, Eastern Michigan University)
«As usual, Michael C. Keith has found yet another way to make a significant and unique contribution to radio studies. ‘Radio Cultures’ is brilliantly organized to simultaneously fill several gaps in the literature of the sound medium. He has recruited an excellent team of contributors to create a work that covers key issues both little-known and misunderstood.» (Pete Orlik, Central Michigan University)
«Michael C. Keith has brought together an outstanding set of original essays covering a broad array of topics that show how deeply embedded radio is in American culture.» (Michael Brown, Professor, University of Wyoming; Editor, ‘Journal of Radio and Audio Media’)