On April 14th, 1961, television viewers across Europe watched live images of Yuri Gagarin being celebrated on the Red Square in Moscow. The broadcast was made possible by the linking of the Intervision and Eurovision television networks, which was the result of cooperation between broadcasters on both sides of the Iron Curtain. By looking into how the co-operation between the OIRT and EBU was gradually developed between 1957 and 1961 this article engages with the interplay between cultural, legal and technological aspects of broadcasting and how the transnational broadcast of Gagarin’s return to Moscow was made possible. The article furthermore argues the  need to understand early television in Europe as a dialectic between the national and the transnational and shows how the live transmission network binding the East and West together was the result of an interplay between structures provided by transnational organisations such as the OIRT and EBU, and initiatives by national broadcasting organisations.

programme exchange, EBU, OIRT, transnational broadcasting, television history
Netherlands Institute for Sound and Vision
dx.doi.org/10.18146/2213-0969.2012.jethc018
VIEW Journal
Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International (CC BY-SA 4.0)
VIEW Journal of European Television History and Culture; Vol 1, No 2 (2012); 45-55

Lundgren, Lars. (2012). Live From Moscow: The Celebration of Yuri Gagarin and Transnational Television in Europe. VIEW Journal, 1(2), 45–55. doi:10.18146/2213-0969.2012.jethc018