This book has been wriĴ en out of a long time interest in examining the pleasures and possibilities of watching prime time soap operas. As a theoretical project, it began for me when, in the years of my postdoctoral work, I started examining artifacts of the media in India such as advertising texts, Bollywood fi lms and beauty pageants. In the intervening years, a great deal has changed. Work on popular culture in western academia has gained respectability, though it took somewhat longer for a similar trend to catch up in India (cf. Uberoi 2006: ix).