This essay looks into the intellectual life of télé-clubs, the collective television watching experiment prominent in France in the 1950s, and its role in television studies. The article explores different directions by analyzing télé-clubs as a moment in television history itself and based on that, searching for a new method of studying television history. The article will examine the place of télé-clubs in European television history in two ways. Firstly, the article will look into how two recent conceptual developments that see media forms as transnational and remedial are useful for addressing some aspects of télé-clubs that have not received much treatment. Secondly, the article will consider where the first piece of intellectual work on télé-clubs – the report on the télé-clubs themselves by Joffre Dumazedier (1956) – might be located in the history of television studies in relation to other developments occurring in the 1950s. The article will plead in favour of the need to think of the instrumental uses of television in the period before its expansion and eventual domestication.

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Sound & Vision
VIEW Journal

Wagman, Ira. (2012). Tele-clubs and European Television History Beyond the Screen. VIEW Journal, (. 2), 118–128. doi:10.18146/2213-0969.2012.jethc024