chapter  2
PERFORMING TALK
WithLouann Haarman
Pages 40

This chapter provides an overview of the daytime talk show, possibly the most familiar and popular manifestation of a vast and fluid genre that embraces an impressive variety of television formats. These include conversation between elite peers, round table or group discussions, interviews, debates, mock courtroom proceedings, and topical discussions between experts and ordinary people. The characterizing feature of all such formats is the performance of talk before an audience, but there is immense variety in the performers, the content and style of the talk, the procedures followed, and the characteristics and interventions of the participating and/or overhearing audiences. Indeed, even within discernible subgenres such as the daytime talk show, significant variations in content, style, and procedure combine to determine recognizably different products.