Eastern Michigan University
direct edit

Mary Ann Watson

Professor of Electronic Media and Film Studies

Mary Ann Watson 129 A Quirk




  • PhD - Communication, University of Michigan, 1983

Professional Associations/Memberships

  • The Library of American Broadcasting
  • Journal of Popular Film & Television
  • Archive of American Television

Representative Courses Taught

  • CTAT 344 - Continuity Writing for the Electronic Media
  • CTAT 336 - American Television in the 20th Century
  • CTAT 444 - Dramatic Scriptwriting for Electronic Media



Mary Ann Watson is a recipient of the EMU Distinguished Faculty Award for Scholarly and Creative Activity and has received research awards from the Rockefeller Foundation and National Endowment for the Humanities. She is the author of The Expanding Vista:  American Television in the Kennedy Years, which has become of widely cited work in the literature of the field.  She is also the author of Defining Visions: Television and the American Experience in the 20th Century.  Dr. Watson has contributed book chapters to many works, including The Columbia History of American Television.  Watson is the co-editor of Norman Corwin’s One World Flight: The Lost Journal of Radio’s Greatest Writer.

Her articles have also appeared in the Washington Journalism Review; Media Studies Journal; Journal of Broadcasting; Journal of Popular Film & Television; and Electronic Media. Watson has contributed entries to the Encyclopedia of Television and the Encyclopedia of Popular Culture

Dr. Watson has been a consultant to several documentaries, including Color Adjustment:  Blacks in Prime Time; Making Sense of the Sixties; and JFK: Breaking the News, all of which aired on American public television. She has worked on many museum exhibitions and archival seminars, including programs at the UCLA Film & Television Archive; the Museum of Broadcast Communications; the Chicago Historical Society, and the Smithsonian Institution.  Watson is often called on for expert commentary on media issues by news organizations that include:  CNN, NPR, BBC Radio, CBC Television, the Boston Globe, the Chicago Tribune, the Washington Post, as well as TV Guide.