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  • Acknowledgments  ix
    Introduction. Black and White and Technicolored: Channeling the TV Life  1
    1. What's in a Game? Quiz Shows and the "Prism of Race"  22
    2. "Those Thrilling Days of Yesteryear": Stigmatic Blackness and the Rise of Technicolored TV  52
    3. The Shirley Temple of My Familiar: Take Two  83
    4. Interracial Loving: Sexless in the Suburbs of the 1960s  112
    5. "A Credit to My Race": Acting Black and Black Acting from Julia to Scandal  134
    6. A Clear and Present Absence: Perry Mason and the Case of the Missing "Minorities"  159
    7. "Soaploitation": Getting Away with Murder in Primetime  183
    8. The Punch and Judge Judy Shows: Really Real TV and the Dangers of a Day in Court  209
    9. The Autumn of His Discontent: Bill Cosby, Fatherhood, and the Politics of Palatability  232
    10. The "Thug Default": Why Racial Representation Still Matters  261
    Epilogue. Final Spin: "That's Not My Food"  285
    Notes  289
    Bibliography  311
    Index
  • “Demonstrating Ann duCille’s tremendous knowledge, academic expertise, and life experience, Technicolored furthers our understanding of race and representation through the medium of television. And just as significant, the story of her striving black, working-class family in a small New England town provides a depiction of blackness that is rarely represented in popular culture. Technicolored is a clearly written, insightful, and entertaining work.” — Farah Jasmine Griffin, author of, Harlem Nocturne: Women Artists and Progressive Politics during World War II

    Technicolored explores how identities are ‘screened,’ how personal memory and public history intersect, and how our society and ourselves might be (tele)envisioned. Interweaving memoir and cultural theory, media analysis and social commentary, this beautifully written book not only stretches the limits of intellectual production; it brilliantly reveals how understandings (or misunderstandings) of race are themselves produced, stretched, and limited through media.” — Lynne Joyrich, author of, Re-viewing Reception: Television, Gender, and Postmodern Culture

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  • Description

    From early sitcoms such as I Love Lucy to contemporary prime-time dramas like Scandal and How to Get Away with Murder, African Americans on television have too often been asked to portray tired stereotypes of blacks as villains, vixens, victims, and disposable minorities. In Technicolored black feminist critic Ann duCille combines cultural critique with personal reflections on growing up with the new medium of TV to examine how televisual representations of African Americans have changed over the last sixty years. Whether explaining how watching Shirley Temple led her to question her own self-worth or how televisual representation functions as a form of racial profiling, duCille traces the real-life social and political repercussions of the portrayal and presence of African Americans on television. Neither a conventional memoir nor a traditional media study, Technicolored offers one lifelong television watcher's careful, personal, and timely analysis of how television continues to shape notions of race in the American imagination.

    About The Author(s)

    Ann duCille is Emerita Professor of English at Wesleyan University and author of Skin Trade and The Coupling Convention: Sex, Text, and Tradition in Black Women's Fiction.
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