The Hidden Truths in Black Sitcoms

This week, while reading the chapter “The Hidden Truths in Contemporary Black Sitcoms,” by Robin R. Means Coleman, Charlton D. McIlwain, and Jessica Moore Matthews, I notice that black sitcoms are still not accurate enough to depict the lives of black people in the society.Robin R. Means Coleman and Charlton D. McIlwain posit that a “black situation comedy describes programming that employs a core cast of African American characters and focuses on those characters’ sociocultural, political and economic experiences.” Sitcoms have evolved a lot since 1950s, but we still expect that enough shows could be produced that present Black characters’ lived experience in Black-centered worlds, as well as those in which they interact closely and often with non-Black counterparts, while each is allowed to maintain some distinctiveness.  The diversity in sitcoms has been significantly changed and is going to a positive direction. Sitcoms center on other races, for example “Fresh Off the Boat” also appears. However, how to represent the race accurately is still a hard question.-Yutian Zhang

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2 Responses to The Hidden Truths in Black Sitcoms

  1. mediaphiles says:

    I think you have a great point here. It is obvious that Sitcoms aim to accurately depict every day life, but I am not sure every show succeeds. It is also interesting to see who is on the screen and who is not being represented. Also, it is important to remember that just because someone is of a particular race/background that they will mirror the entire group. I think Sitcoms have a unique opportunity to send the message that difference is not necessarily negative and is something that should be embraced.

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