ERIC Number: ED319366
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1989
Reference Count: N/A
Unequal Picture. Black, Hispanic, Asian and Native American Characters on Television.
Based on a study which monitored over 150 episodes of television programs on a random basis, this report addresses the following questions: (1) How visible are Black, Hispanic, Asian, and Native American characters on entertainment television? On what types of shows do they appear? (2) What is the state of race relations on television? Do characters encounter bias or is there racial harmony? When problems do occur, are they individual in nature or are they institutional? (3) What types of jobs do women and men of color hold on television? How do their employment patterns compare to those in the real world? (4) Are minority characters on television drawn with distinct identities? Or are they, appearance aside, indistinguishable from White characters? (5) Are Black, Hispanic, Asian, and Native American characters on television faring equally well? Or are there differences in portrayals? and (6) What is the relationship of employment behind the scenes to image? Do programs featuring people of color employ minority producers and writers? Highlights of the study include: (1) almost all minority characters on television are Black; (2) 9 out of 10 minority characters on television are middle class or wealthy; (3) television's world is one of racial harmony; (4) most programs reduce injustice to individual conflict; (5) minority female characters are segregated in sitcoms, the only place where they have leading roles; and (6) minority producers constitute only 7% of all producers working on shows with minority characters, while minority female producers constitute only 2% of the total. (GL)
Descriptors: American Indians, Asian Americans, Blacks, Broadcast Television, Employment Level, Hispanic Americans, Mass Media Effects, Minority Groups, Programing (Broadcast), Racial Relations, Sex Differences, Television Research
Wider Opportunities for Women, 1325 G. Street N.W., Lower Level, Washington, DC 20005 ($10.00).
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Ford Foundation, New York, NY.
Authoring Institution: National Commission on Working Women of Wider Opportunities for Women, Washington, DC.