Reality Bites Back

The Troubling Truth About Guilty Pleasure TV


By Jennifer L. Pozner

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This item is a preorder. Your payment method will be charged immediately, and the product is expected to ship on or around October 19, 2010. This date is subject to change due to shipping delays beyond our control.

Nearly every night on every major network,"unscripted" (but carefully crafted) "reality" TV shows routinely glorify retrograde stereotypes that most people would assume got left behind 35 years ago.

In Reality Bites Back, media critic Jennifer L. Pozner aims a critical, analytical lens at a trend most people dismiss as harmless fluff. She deconstructs reality TV's twisted fairytales to demonstrate that far from being simple "guilty pleasures," these programs are actually guilty of fomenting gender-war ideology and significantly affecting the intellectual and political development of this generation's young viewers. She lays out the cultural biases promoted by reality TV about gender, race, class, sexuality, and consumerism, and explores how those biases shape and reflect our cultural perceptions of who we are, what we're valued for, and what we should view as "our place" in society. 

Smart and informative, Reality Bites Back arms readers with the tools they need to understand and challenge the stereotypes reality TV reinforces and, ultimately, to demand accountability from the corporations responsible for this contemporary cultural attack on three decades of feminist progress.

On Sale
Oct 19, 2010
Page Count
392 pages
Seal Press

Jennifer L. Pozner

About the Author

Jennifer L. Pozner is a media critic, journalist, activist and founder/ executive director of Women In Media & News (WIMN), a women’s media analysis, education and advocacy organization dedicated to increasing the presence and power of women in the public debate. Pozner has appeared on cable news programs including The O’Reilly Factor, Hannity & Colmes, The Big Story With John Gibson, Fox & Friends, MSNBC’s Scarborough Country, Comedy Central’s The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, and appeared as a commentator on ABC News Now’s Top Priority, Oxygen Network’s Pure Oxygen, and Free Speech TV. Pozner is regularly interviewed on a variety of commercial and independent radio shows, including Democracy Now!, Wake Up Call, and Uprising Radio, as well as NPR, On The Media, and News Radio Montreal. She has been featured in several independent documentary projects, including the film I Was a Teenage Feminist. A noted public speaker, Pozner has conducted interactive multimedia presentations and participated in panels and debates at dozens of high schools, colleges, and conferences in more than half the US. Visit her website at

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