- Black TV in the 70s by Devorah Heitner
- Revolution Televised: Prime Time And The Struggle For Black Power
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Black TV in the 70s by Devorah Heitner
Buy with confidence, excellent customer service!. Seller Inventory n. Christine Acham. Publisher: University of Minnesota Press , This specific ISBN edition is currently not available.
View all copies of this ISBN edition:. Synopsis About this title Offers a complex reading of African Americans appearing on television in the s and s, finding within these programs opposition to white construction of African-American identity and the potential of television to effect social change and limitations. Review : "It's fucking great that someone recognizes and appreciates what we were doing during this important period in television history. Buy New Learn more about this copy.
- Revolution Televised: Prime Time and the Struggle for Black Power.
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Her class-based argument allows for new readings of texts that have been maligned and dismissed. Despite the tremendous structural racism in the television industry, Acham sees a possibility for resistance, and is able to demonstrate it convincingly.
Revolution Televised: Prime Time And The Struggle For Black Power
Significantly, she also focuses mostly on comedies, and situates enjoyment by black viewers as, itself, a possible form of resistance. She sees this enjoyment as politicizing rather than palliative. Building on cultural history such as the work of Kevin Gaines, Acham ties the notion of uplift to middle class African Americans. She claims that middle class ideologies dominate the critical dialogue around black televisual representations in the seventies and lead towards dismissal.
This is a mistake, as television was doing important political work during this revolutionary period in black history. The later chapters, on Good Times, Soul Train!
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The later chapters assess programs as they changed over time, a key technique for television scholarship and a highly relevant one in these cases. Thus, a significant contribution of this volume consists of in providing the history of understudied programs such as Soul Train and The Flip Wilson Show.
- Revolution Televised by Christine Acham.
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- Revolution Televised: Prime Time And The Struggle For Black Power.
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Acham demonstrates why Soul Train has held up over the years while Flip Wilson has not. Wilson, who grew up desperately poor, joined the service at 16 and began a comedy career in the s. By the he had appeared on the tonight show and had a considerable following.
His work eschewed overt social critique of racism, which may explain why his show survived four years, while the far more overtly critical Richard Pryor was allowed only four episodes. Pryor, of course, was not able to do this. Acham does an excellent job of demonstrating how Wilson was at once a symbol of African American success while simultaneously reminding viewers of vaudeville and even minstrelsy.
In addition to resistant performances, actors also exerted their influence by creating public discourse outside of their roles by giving critical interviews in magazines. Dianne Carroll did this, by speaking out against racism in magazines and making it clear that the rosy view that her character, Julia held about race relations was not one she shared. Secondly, she spoke out very critically and was sometimes able to obtain script changes when she found objections to certain plots.
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