Race And Ethnicity In Popular Culture Essay

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Mass Media:
1. Journalism
2. Film
3. Television
4. Theater
5. Comedy
6. Music
7. Video Games

Imagined Racial America – Four Main Types of Minority Characters:
1. Criminals
2. Crime Fighters
3. Hustlers
4. Family Members

Invisible Real Minorities – Most minorities in real life are invisible to mainstream America because their live do not fit one of the four main stereotypes of minority characters.

Negative Images of Minorities – Characters depicted within film, literature, and the graphic arts spread distorted and often negative images of minorities.

Reversal Periods – At times, long strides have been taken to eliminate derogatory ethnic portrayals.   During World War II, films depicted Blacks and Hispanics as sophisticated and educated individuals who play a prominent role in American society.   This reversal period was initiated by the American government in order to demonstrate our democracy in action on the screen.   Progress, however, is rarely continuous.

Stereotypes – “[C]onvenient shorthand for ideas [media producers] expect viewers to hold” (Woll, 178).   “[S]tereotypes can … be useful to the media because they provide a quick identity for a person or group that is easily recognized by an audience.   When deadlines loom, it's sometimes faster and easier to use a stereotype to characterize a person or situation, than it is to provide a more complex explanation” (Media Awareness).

Antidote for the Use of Stereotypes – Audience members must changed their ideas and broaden their concepts concerning race and ethnicity.

Television – “Television may be the ‘major educating and socializing institution in America’” (Cortes, 2011, 104).

Mass Media’s Role in Teaching Stereotypes:
1. “[W]hether intentionally or unintentionally, both the news and the entertainment media “teach” the public about minorities, other ethnic groups and societal groups” (Cort, 179).
2. “[The] mass media curriculum has a particularly powerful educational impact...

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