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Title: Representations of race in contemporary U.S. television drama series
Author: Baluch, Jamila
ISNI:       0000 0004 5351 5999
Awarding Body: University of Reading
Current Institution: University of Reading
Date of Award: 2014
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This thesis examines quantitative and qualitative representations of race in contemporary U.S. drama series with a focus on network television and the two largest minority groups in the United States, Latinos and African Americans. The analysis of quantitative representations of whites and non-whites in American network dramas is based on the February 2011 television schedule of the five broadcast networks ABC, CBS, Fox, NBC and The CW, with a focus on regular characters as represented on the networks' official websites. The results show that Latinos are dramatically under-represented in U.S. network drama series, while whites and black males are overrepresented. Furthermore, due to structural changes in the American television landscape and an increased focus on non-scripted reality programming, black-themed and Latino-themed programmes have been completely eliminated from primetime network television so that African-American and Latino characters are generally portrayed in white settings. The second part of the thesis provides a critical analysis of the three internationally successful American quality dramas CSI, House and Desperate Housewives. Among their otherwise white regular casts, CSI and House each include one black male character, while Desperate Housewives features a Latina as one of the four female protagonists. Based on a critical analysis of individual episodes as well as on a contextualisation of the characters within each series, representations of whiteness and non-whiteness are discussed in the context of traditional Western conceptions of racial dilference.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available