Color Television: Fifty Years of African American and Latino Images on Prime-Time Television.

Author:Whitt, Jan
Position:Book review

Pieraccini, C., & Alligood, D. L. (2005). Color television: Fifty years of African American and Latino images on prime-time television. Dubuque, IA: Kendall/Hunt. 190 pages.

As interesting as the book itself are the two authors of Color Television: Fifty Years of African American and Latino Images on Prime-Time Television. Cristina Pieraccini and Douglass L. Alligood teamed up to produce a much-needed resource that can serve as a supplemental text in a broadcasting, history of media, media studies, racial and ethnic studies, or sociology class.

Pieraccini is a professor of broadcasting at the State University of New York at Oswego. Her primary research interests are women and media and minorities and media. Since 1976, she has taught courses dealing with broadcast images and stereotypes of women and minorities. Color Television is a logical extension of her scholarly interests.

Alligood is a senior vice president for special markets at BBDO in New York. He has worked in advertising, communications, and marketing for more than 35 years. For BBDO, Alligood has written a series of reports on African American, Asian, and Hispanic consumer markets, including studies of television-viewing practices among African American and Hispanic communities. Color Television is a logical project for him as well, especially as his credits include more than 30 presentations at various colleges and universities.

This 179-page gem has eight chapters and a conclusion. The book is bound but offers readers the option of tearing out particular sections of the book for classroom or other use.

Sections of the book are historical and chronological, making them informative and easy to follow. They include chapter 1, "The Television Age Inherits Film Stereotypes From Hollywood"; chapter 2, "The 1950s: Stereotypes and Underrepresentations"; chapter 3, "The 1960s: Civil Rights and Change"; chapter 4, "The 1970s: The Ghetto Comedies and Norman Lear Change the Face of Television"; and chapter 5, "The 1980s: Bill Cosby and Ensemble Casts Diversify Television."

Chapter 6 is entitled "The 1990s: Segregated Television"; chapter 7 is "Year 2000 and Beyond: Diversity and Balance"; and chapter 8 is "Spanish-Language Versus English-Language Television Today." The conclusion is titled...

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