The little man comedies of Charlie Drake and their relation to the unconscious

Bannister, J 2013, The little man comedies of Charlie Drake and their relation to the unconscious , PhD thesis, University of Salford.

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This thesis has two purposes: to examine the film and television ‘little man’ comedies of the British comic Charlie Drake in order to rescue him from the neglect that has masked his work, and to recover psycho-analysis as a viable critical methodological tool for understanding comedy. This thesis tests the applicability of psycho-analytic cultural theory to British Television and film comedy by using Drake’s work as a case history; given the scope of the thesis I also draw upon his work on dreams, the Oedipus complex, and castration anxiety as Freud’s work on jokes, humour and the comic was part of a triad of books that explores the trivial in the psychopathology of everyday life. The thesis adopts a psycho-analytic position because the ‘little man’ character(s) played by Drake render them amenable to a Freudian analysis. Much of the research material included in the thesis pertaining to Drake’s private life supports the argument that Drake’s ‘little man’ comedies and the ‘little man’ character he created are psycho-biographical. Similarly, audience research reports provide evidence that men’s appreciation of Drake’s comedies was different to women’s which explains why the psycho-sociological reception of his ‘little man’ character's popular appeal was predetermined.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Contributors: Mundy, John (Supervisor)
Themes: Media, Digital Technology and the Creative Economy
Schools: Schools > School of Arts & Media
Funders: Arts & Humanities Research Council (AHRC)
Depositing User: J Bannister
Date Deposited: 29 Nov 2013 16:40
Last Modified: 27 Aug 2021 20:09

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