Personal profile


I studied English and Media studies (BA) at the University of Sussex, then gained an MA in film from the University of Southampton. I then undertook a PhD on the subject of British film and television in the 1950s (also at the University of Southampton), specifically the early relations between the two media, in the form of the first ‘cinema programmes’ on television. In my first full-time teaching job at the Southampton Institute (now Southampton Solent University) I taught Media and Cultural studies, before moving on to teach television and film at the University of Kent. I joined UEA as Reader in Television in 2007, where I primarily teach in the areas of introduction to Television Studies; theoretical approaches to television, and the subject of celebrity.  I was appointed to Professor in 2018. 

My research focuses on different areas spanning celebrity culture; popular British television (such as Reality TV or quiz shows); British television history; and feminist approaches to eating disorders. In my historical research on British television (the books British TV and Film in the 1950s, Entertaining TV: the BBC and Popular Programme Culture in the 1950s), I have been keen to challenge received ideas about British television history, whether with regard to its relations with the film industry in the early years, or the canonical ideas about early BBC television rejecting notions of the ‘popular’. With regard to British reality TV, I have examined aspects of historical development, issues of generic labeling and circulation, and questions of celebrity. In addition to this, my work on celebrity has aimed to contribute to historical knowledge about British television and celebrity, as well as feminist approaches to the field. I also co-founded the Routledge journal Celebrity Studies (2010) and edited it for the first 8 years of its life.  

Since 2014 I have done considerable work in the different field of feminst approaches to eating disorders, especially anorexia. This has involved analysing media representations of anorexia (YouTube for example) and particularly doing empirical work with people with lived experience. A key focus of my research has  examined how feminist approaches are neglected in contemporary treatment for eating disorders and the implications of this both clinically and culturally. 

I am interested in supervising postgraduate research in a broad range of areas, whether popular television, the intersection between television/ film history, British TV history,  stardom/celebrity, feminist approaches to eating disorders/ the body. 

Key Research Interests

Research interests - Popular television, British television history; celebrity; feminist approaches to eating disorders. 

Key Responsibilities

I currently run the Feminist Media Studies research cluster. 



Areas of Expertise

British TV history; popular TV, celebrity, feminist approaches to eating disorders.