Professor Jason Jacobs


School of Communication and Arts
Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences
+61 7 336 52593
+61 7 336 53136


Jacobs has an international reputation as a historian of television drama, its institutions, technology and aesthetics. He has taught film and television studies at the University of East Anglia, the University of Warwick, and Griffith University. His first book, The Intimate Screen (Oxford University Press, 2000) is a pioneering study of early television drama; his second book Body Trauma TV (British Film Institute, 2003) explores the aesthetics of the hospital drama in relation to the contemporary cultural imagination. More recently he published Deadwood (Palgrave Macmillan/British Film Institute, 2012), as part of the BFI TV Classics series. He is currently working on an Australian Research Council funded project called ’The Persistence of Television: How the Medium Adapts to Survive in the Digital World', and is writing a book on David Milch, the author of Deadwood (Manchester University Press).

Research Interests

  • Television aesthetics
    especially contemporary debates about judgement and value.
  • The history of television (and other kinds of broadcasting)
    which connects textual production to institutional, commercial and technological contexts.
  • Aspects of television art and achievement
    especially in relation to contemporary television drama and authorship. The history and present of screen aesthetics in relation to television, videogames, film, etc., especially issues, theorisations and debates concerning medium specificity.


  • Bachelor of Arts, University of Warwick
  • PhD, E. Anglia


View all Publications



Book Chapter

  • Jacobs, Jason (2015). Television Drama. In Manuel Alvarado, Milly Buonanno, Herman Gray and Toby Miller (Ed.), The SAGE Handbook of Television Studies (pp. 315-324) Los Angeles, CA United States: SAGE Reference. doi:10.4135/9781473910423.n23

  • Jacobs, Jason and Peacock, Steven (2013). Introduction. In Television aesthetics and style (pp. 1-20) New York, NY, United States: Bloomsbury Academic.

  • Jacobs, Jason (2011). Christopher, Osama and AJ : Contemporary narcissism and terrorism in the Sopranos. In David Lavery, Douglas L. Howard and Paul Levinson (Ed.), The essential Sopranos reader (pp. 65-80) Lexington, KY, United States: University Press of Kentucky.

  • Jacobs, Jason (2011). Television interrupted : Pollution or aesthetic. In James Bennett and Niki Strange (Ed.), Television as digital media (pp. 255-280) Durham, NC, United States: Duke University Press.

  • Jacobs, Jason (2010). South Park. In David Lavery (Ed.), The Essential Cult TV Reader (pp. 229-236) Lexington, KY, U.S.A.: The University Press of Kentucky.

  • Jacobs, Jason (2006). Al Swearengen, Philosopher King. In Lavery, David (Ed.), Reading Deadwood: a western to swear by (pp. 11-22) London: I. B. Tauris.

  • Jacobs, Jason (2006). Television and history: Investigating the past. In Glen Creeber (Ed.), Tele-visions: An introduction to studying television (pp. 107-115) London, United Kingdom: British Film Institute Publishing.

  • Jacobs, Jason (2005). Violence and therapy in The Sopranos. In Michael Hammond and Lucy Mazdon (Ed.), The contemporary television series (pp. 139-158) Edinburgh, Scotland: Edinburgh University Press.

  • Jacobs, Jason (2004). Charlie's Angels. In Glen Creeber (Ed.), Fifty key television programmes (pp. 45-49) London: Arnold.

  • Jacobs, Jason (2004). ER. In Glen Creeber (Ed.), Fifty key television programmes (pp. 80-84) London: Arnold.

  • Jacobs, Jason (2004). Experimental and live TV in the US. In Michele Hilmes and Jason Jacobs (Ed.), The television history book (pp. 72-75) London: British Film Institute.

  • Jacobs, Jason (2004). Marty. In Glen Creeber (Ed.), Fifty key television programmes (pp. 115-119) London: Arnold.

  • Jacobs, Jason (2003). Early Television in Great Britain (The Coronation). In Michele Hilmes and Jason Jacobs (Ed.), The television history book (pp. 69-72) London, United Kingdom: British Film Institute.

Journal Article

PhD and MPhil Supervision

Current Supervision

  • Master Philosophy — Associate Advisor

    Other advisors:

Completed Supervision