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Short Synopsis
Ghost Channels provides an overview of the paranormal reality television genre, its development, and its place in television history.

Full Synopsis
Through American history, often in times of crisis, there have been outbreaks of obsession with the paranormal. Between 2004 and 2019, over six dozen documentary-style series dealing with paranormal subject matter premiered on television in the United States. Combining the stylistic traits of horror with earnest accounts of what are claimed to be actual events, "paranormal reality" incorporates subject matter formerly characterized as occult or supernatural into the established category of reality TV.

Despite the high number of programs and their evident popularity, paranormal reality television has to date received little critical attention. Ghost Channels provides an overview of the paranormal reality television genre, its development, and its place in television history. Conducting in-depth analyses of over thirty paranormal television series, author Amy Lawrence suggests these programs reveal much about Americans' contemporary fears.

Ridiculed by nearly everyone, paranormal reality TV shows—with their psychics, ghost hunters, and haunted houses—provide unique insights into contemporary American culture. Half-horror, half-documentary realism, these shows expose deep-seated questions about class, race, gender, the value of technology, the failure of institutions, and what it means to be American in the twenty-first century.

Ghost Channels

Paranormal Reality Television and the Haunting of Twenty-First-Century America

Author Amy Lawrence

Narrated by Kate Zane

Publication date Sep 27, 2022

Running time 10 hrs

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