This thesis brings together work I have published in the last
five years in academic journals and edited book collections. All the material presented in the thesis, much of it substantially rewritten, will appear in the trilogy I have been working on since my last published book, Radio, Television and Modern Life (Blackwell 1996). The organising structure of the thesis and its substantive concerns corresponds with that of the three books that will come out of it. The form and content of the thesis, and its relation to the books, is discussed in some detail in its introduction. Its fundamental concern is with human time which I have explored in all my writings since I began research thirty years ago, with my late friend and colleague David Cardiff, into the early history of the British Broadcasting Corporation. The medium of radio is time. Historiography deals with past time. The academic work of writing history on the other, and the temporality of radio and television on the one hand, are the first two themes of this thesis which shows that the orders of time in which they work are divergent rather than convergent. The third section of the thesis attempts their reconciliation through the recovery of meaningful time.