2 erased Through the generations The Cosby Show has made a big cultural impact

2 erased through the generations the cosby show has

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2erased. Through the generations, The Cosby Show has made a big cultural impact on both American and overseas viewers that has shaped the perceptions of African Americans in our society. In the 1980s, perceptions of the African American experience in the United States on television and in pop culture proved drastically different from the realities many black Americans actually faced in American society. While it remains true that many African Americans experienced a new kind of socio-economic upward mobility in the 1980s, the greater reality of increasing levels of poverty, crack epidemics, and housing and business loan inequalities was a more familiar reality to the majority of African Americans. In Sut Jhally and Justin Lewis’s criticism of The Cosby Show,they claim “that the presence of upper middle class black people on television created the impression among white TV viewers that anyone regardless of race, color, or creed, could ‘make it’ in the modern United States” (Jhally & Lewis 93). This ideology claims that a new form of racism was born in America. While most Americans were now able to look past color due to the CivilRights efforts of the 1950s and 1960s, shows like The Cosby Show,where upper middle class black Americans laughed and struggled with every day dilemmas familiar to every American family, fails “to come to terms with the harsh realities of class barriers” (Jhally & Lewis 97). This sense of colorblindness is a major progress in American society, but it comes at a huge cost; class position in the 1980s made the Huxtables a respectable family. “The Cosby Show thus allows white people the luxury of being both liberal and intolerant. They reject bigotry based upon skin color, yet they are wary of most (working class) black people. Color difference is okay, cultural difference is not” (Jhally & Lewis
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110). To critics like Jhally and Lewis,
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  • Spring '14
  • StacyMorgan
  • Bill Cosby, Cosby, The Cosby Show

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