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TV Moms

  • By: Lenora Perry-Samaniego
  • In: Encyclopedia of Motherhood
  • Edited by: Andrea O'Reilly
  • Subject:Sociology of Gender, Parenting, Maternal Health

The introduction of television into the American home after World War II corresponded with the proliferation of mass-produced housing built to accommodate the growing families of returning GIs. Like no other phenomenon before or since, television has grown with subsequent generations, contributing to the consciousness of a nation.

The 1950s

During the 1950s, even the government weighed in on such issues as television's impact on the whole-someness of the family, and in response, television networks offered programming reminiscent of popular radio shows from decades before. Domestic life was represented with nuclear families, such as that in The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet, The Donna Reed Show, Leave It To Beaver, and Father Knows Best, which presented idealized versions of white middle-class families in suburban communities, and mothers ...

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