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“Who Wants To Be a Millionaire” in America, Russia, and Saudi Arabia: A Celebration of Differences or a Unified Global Culture?

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This study compares the themes of questions asked in the quiz show Who Wants To Be a Millionaire in America, Russia, and Saudi Arabia. One thousand one hundred and three questions (383 from American programs, 398 from Russian programs, and 322 from Saudi programs) were sampled. Of the themes national identity, popular culture, high brow culture, and politics and economy the Saudi quiz overemphasizes national identity, as does to a lesser extent the Russian quiz. The American quiz overemphasizes popular culture. The differences between the quizzes are in line with cultural differences between the countries. These findings suggest that the quiz show, a form of global TV entertainment, is flexible enough to manifest local nuances.

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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Communication Yezreel Valley College, Isreal

Publication date: 2003-01-01

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