the role of TV on our culture and on us as individuals

 Do you think television plays a greater role in uniting us as a culture or in separating us as individuals?

Respond to two original responses thoroughly in a manner that invites an extension of the conversation. In other words, “I totally agree with you” is NOT a sufficient response. Each peer response should be approximately 6 – 7 sentences, or a paragraph in length. Response needs strong structure and a logical flow. You don’t need to answer the original questions.

Part A

Original Questions Think about the role of TV on our culture and on us as individuals. 1. How and why? 2. Has this changed over time? (Think about the role that TV played in the 1950s and

1960s vs now). 3. Please create a list of examples of specific TV shows/ types of programming that unite

us and a list of TV shows/types of programming that separate us.

Student A’s post

1. I believe that television plays a significant role in our society today and unites us as a culture, rather than separates us as individuals. Television allows everyone to come together regardless of their sexuality, race, ethnicity, disability, or age and simply pay attention to a monitor that feeds us information. There is an exorbitant amount of television shows and movies out now that different people might enjoy. Additionally, the diversity amongst theses people does not have an effect on what is currently playing in theaters or on TV. 2. Everyone has the ability to choose what type of content they want to view instead of others dictating what they can and cannot watch. However, television has changed over the years and played a huge part in dividing us as a nation during the 50’s and 60’s. The 50’s and 60’s in America was a time where classes were very significant and only the wealthy could really afford television. The textbook says on this subject that “in the early 1950’s, television – like cable in the early 1980s – served a more elite and wealthier audience” (Campbell, Martin & Fobes p.189). Most people could not afford television and it was seen as more of a luxury, which helped create a divide among society. This divide is also known as the digital divide, which helped split social classes with digital technology as the main driving force. Luckily in today’s world most people are fortunate enough to own their very own TV, creating a better sense of unity within society. 3. Shows that I think divide us as individuals would be ones based on race and ethnicity. This includes programs like, Modern Family, Fresh off the boat, Blackish, The Goldberg’s, and so many more. Each of those programs is family oriented and comedic that really portrays one race or ethnicity. I do not necessarily believe they are terrible, but they definitely separate us as a culture. While shows like Game of Thrones, Shark Tank, The Bachelor, The Voice, and so many others unite us. Those are programs that appeal to most people and have a large fan base. Many people in the world enjoy watching at least one of

those and it brings people together. These shows are not about race or sexuality; they are more for pleasure and indulgence.

Student B’s post

1. I think television plays a greater role in uniting us as a culture. Think about it, whenever you talk to someone, many times Tv shows come up. You say to a person, “Yea I’m watching the Tv show series Gossip Girl.” Then you can have an entire 1- hour conversation about Gossip Girl. You can argue with the person you’re talking to and agree with them. For example, “I hated in season 3 when Jane Doe did this to John Doe.” Tv shows do a good job of uniting us as a culture. It creates conversation, unity, and comfort for people all around. You can barely know a person, talk about a Tv show, and then you guys can become good friends. Television has a huge impact on us.

2. Tv has changed many ways since the 1950s and 1960s. Relating to the Tv series part of it, you had a lot less gore and sex in television shows in the 1950s and 1960s. You had shows like Leave it to Beaver, where no swearing was used, no nudity was shown, and it was clean and simple. Now, you have many different types of television shows. Think about how much nudity and violence is shown in Game of Thrones. Personally, I can’t even watch that show because of how much violence there is. As for the news aspect, it’s become a lot more diverse. In the 1950s and 1960s, news network hosts were primarily white males. According to the book, “Robinson was the first black reporter to co-anchor a network news program, while Walters was the first woman (Media & Culture, Chapter 6, Page 191).” This was in 1978. Now, we have news anchors like Don Lemon, who’s a gay African American. This wouldn’t have been possible 50 or 60 years ago. We continue to develop and we are learning that difference is okay, and everyone should be accepted, regardless of your ethnicity or sexuality.

3. This is a hard list. If I’m going to write about television shows that unite us, I would put down way too many shows. For example, Lost, Breaking Bad, House of Cards, Grey’s Anatomy, etc. Tv shows that separate us are also the ones that unite us. For example, the television show Sopranos might separate Italians from other backgrounds, but people still talk about it. It still creates a conversation. If you binge- watch any shows, you are going to be separated from reality for a while because you are only watching shows. That’s all I can say about television shows that don’t unite us.