“Not Bad for a Few Ordinary Girls in a Tin Hut” – Re-Imagining Women’s Social Experience of the Second World War Through Female Ensemble Drama

Mahoney, Cat (2015) “Not Bad for a Few Ordinary Girls in a Tin Hut” – Re-Imagining Women’s Social Experience of the Second World War Through Female Ensemble Drama. Frames Cinema Journal (7). ISSN 2053-8812

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Abstract

Women’s history and women’s television, referring to television made with a discernibly female focus and targeted at a presumed female audience, can both be said to be marginalised within the wider context of their respective fields. The necessity of the “women” prefix imbues them with an otherness which segregates them from mainstream or traditional narratives – both in history and on television. In her 2013 article, Vicky Ball makes a convincing case for female ensemble drama as a space in which women’s screen histories as well as women’s history on screen can be re-examined in a female-centred context. This article examines two female ensemble dramas; Land Girls, created by Roland Moore and first distributed by the BBC in 2009, and The Bletchley Circle, written by Guy Burt and first distributed by ITV in September 2012. Both dramas are located within prime time schedules and pitched towards a presumed, largely female audience, accustomed to consuming conventionally structured popular history dramas. The article seeks to explore the ways in which these two Second World War dramas offer at once a progressive, centre stage space in which women and their experiences of the Second World War can be explored, whilst at the same time culminating in resolutions which re-situate women within more conventional roles, reasserting implicitly conservative gender norms.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: L900 Others in Social studies
V300 History by topic
W400 Drama
Department: Faculties > Arts, Design and Social Sciences > School of Arts and Social Sciences > Media & Communication Design
Depositing User: Becky Skoyles
Date Deposited: 02 Jul 2015 07:15
Last Modified: 15 May 2017 02:03
URI: http://nrl.northumbria.ac.uk/id/eprint/23223

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