‘Remembering Our First TV Set’. Personal Memories as a Source for Television Audience History

Cecilia Penati


Personal memories represent a crucial source in outlining a history of television audience. However, they are undoubtedly special historical tools, and their interpretation requires particular cares and concerns. Relying on interviews leaded on direct witnesses, the paper describes the advent of television in the private space of the home in the mid fifties in Italy, comparing personal memories with the interpretative repertoires filtered down by the popular media system. The paper also tries to add a further piece to a wider ‘European historical mosaic’, in seeking to relate some aspects peculiar to the Italian scenario to a broader transnational pattern.


Italian Television, domestication, audience history, TV set, RAI, quiz show.

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