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The Fantasy of Reality

Critical Essays on «The Real Housewives»

Rachel E. Silverman

With over twenty different casts, multiple spin-off series, and five international locations, The Real Housewives franchise is a television phenomenon. The women on these shows have reinvented the soap opera diva and in doing so, have offered television viewers a new opportunity to embrace a loved, yet waning, genre. As the popularity and prevalence of the docu-drama genre of reality TV continues to increase, the time is ripe for a collection of this sort. The Fantasy of Reality: Critical Essays on ‘The Real Housewives’ explores the series and the women of The Real Housewives through the lens of race, class, gender, sexuality, and place. The contributing authors use an expansive and impressive array of methodological approaches to examine particular aspects of the series, offering rich analysis and insight along the way. This collection takes seriously what some may mock and others adore. Chapters are both fun and informative, lending themselves well to Housewives fans and media scholars alike.
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Rachel E. Silverman (PhD, University of South Florida) is an Assistant Professor of Communication in the Department of Humanities and Communication at Embry Riddle Aeronautical University. Dr. Silverman’s research focuses on the intersection of Jewish and LGBT identities in popular culture, women’s health, food studies, and social justice pedagogy. She is the co-editor of and contributor to Communicating Pregnancy Loss: Narrative as a Methodology for Change (Peter Lang, 2014), has published journal articles in Sexuality and Culture, Health Communication, and the Journal of Religion and Popular Culture, and has also written a number of scholarly book chapters, encyclopedia entries, and book reviews.

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