More than a dozen contributors to a forthcoming book on the current state and future of U.S. daytime soap operas will be presenting at the national annual gathering of the Popular Culture Association and American Culture Association in St. Louis this Friday, April 2. Featured speakers will include The Bold and the Beautiful co-head writer Kay Alden; soap opera blogger Lynn Liccardo, Emory University's Melissa Scardaville, fan soap opera historian William Reynolds, University of North Carolina visiting scholar Bernard Timberg, University of Texas-Austin's Ernest Alba, University of Southern California's Mary Jeanne Wilson (who also works for ABC Research on daytime programming), and Boston University's Deborah Jaramillo. The planned panels also include Carol Traynor Williams, author of It's Time for My Story: Soap Opera Sources, Structure, and Response; Mary Cassata, co-editor of Daytime Television: Tuning in American Serial Drama and co-director of Project Daytime; and Barbara Irwin, co-director of Project Daytime and chair of the annual soap opera area for the conference.
The panels were organized in conjunction with the book's three co-editors, who will also be presenting. University of California-Berkeley's Abigail De Kosnik, Peppercom Strategic Communications' Sam Ford, and Miami University's C. Lee Harrington (co-author of Soap Fans: Pursuing Pleasure and Making Meaning in Everyday Life, amongst a variety of other soap opera scholarship) will end Friday's panels by leading a group discussion on where the soap opera genre is headed.
The full PCA/ACA conference runs from Wednesday, March 31st, through Saturday, April 3rd. Information can be found at http://pcaaca.org/conference/national.php
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