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By: Sherryl Browne Graves

In: Children & Television: Images in a Changing Sociocultural World

Chapter 12: Television, the Portrayal of African Americans, and the Development of Children's Attitudes

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Television, the Portrayal of African Americans, and the Development of Children's Attitudes
Television, the portrayal of African Americans, and the development of children's attitudes
SherrylBrowneGraves

In the social world of television, characters are overwhelmingly European, male, and middle class, whether one is watching prime-time or children's programming (Downing, 1974; Greenberg, Simmons, Hogan, & Atkins, 1980; Williams & Condry, 1989). Excluding programming in languages other than English, among underrepresented groups, African Americans are the only group appearing in significant numbers (Berry, 1988; S. B. Graves, 1980; Steenland, 1989; Williams & Condry, 1989).

One can conclude, as did a recent American Psychological Association task force (Huston et al., 1992), that minorities, including African Americans, are underrepresented on television, segregated in specific types of content, and rarely engage in cross-ethnic interactions. ...

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