I Love Lucy, one of the famous television shows of the 1950’s, depicted a zany housewife balancing chores and a growing family intermingled with a series of continuous mishaps. Aside from the show’s entertainment value, the setting provided a sense of cultural critique. In this paper, I explain the presence of patriarchal norms and degradation of female characters in the show in addition to the breaking of societal taboos brought about by the driven post-war era.
Television sitcoms of the 1950’s through the 1990’s demonstrated the values and structure of the American family by portraying stereotypes. Since television sets became mainstream and entered almost every American home, the content of American sitcoms has reflected the culture of the times. Thus, as the popular American sitcoms of the 1950’s suggest, families living in the 1950’s were very tightly grouped and did everything together with roles of males and females clearly defined. In the 1950’s women have the housecleaning and child care and men worked, providing for the family. In the sixties, women acquired more freedom in their lives. The 1963 Equal Pay Act and the 1964 Civil Rights Act came into effect. It was the end of the baby Boomer era. In the seventies, women continued to fight for equal pay to their male counterparts. Many families had a color television by the 1970’s. In modern day, women are equal to men and feminism is decreasing. Four sitcoms, Leave It To Beaver, What’s Happening, The Wonder Years, and Malcolm in the Middle, portrayed the relationships and values of families during different decades.
Television situational comedies have the ability to represent different values or concerns of their audience, these values often change every decade or so to reflect and highlight the changes that the audience is experiencing within society, at the time of production. Between the years of 1950 and 2010, the representation of gender roles and family structure has been addressed and featured in various sitcoms, such as “Father Knows Best” and “Modern Family”, through the use of narrative conventions, symbolic, audio and technical codes. These representations have transformed over time to reflect the changes in social, political, and historical contexts.
Growing up as a female in the nineties had its ups and downs. Being a female who was interested in typically ‘masculine’ activities was ten times harder.
Hutchison mentions to Mrs. Delacroix, “Thought my old man was out back stacking wood” (Jackson 106). This is precisely the way society previously was; both men and women knew their role and without any questions blindly followed it since it was what they had known to be right their whole life. Nowadays very rarely are women seen being simple stay-at-home mothers, not working or being submissive to men. Women have become dominant, many establish solid careers and provide financial stability along with their husbands to their children, some even maintain households on their own as a single parent. Throughout time there has been a major shift in the structure of families. In comparison to how far people’s perception of families has evolved, gender roles within a family have essentially become nonexistent and nothing more than an old custom in most
This reflects a unique aspect of American Life where women were treated as lesser than their male counterparts even though they were very important to society. They played a large part in keeping their society going, but did not get any recognition in the form of power or respect. Women served as housewives, cooking, cleaning, and doing anything else necessary to take care of their husbands, children, and houses. Ulrich discusses how housewives “demonstrated the old proverb, ‘A man works from sun to sun, but a woman’s work is never done’ “ (Ulrich 67). Housewives play an essential role in the functioning of their family, but the sons of the family inherit the land instead of the
“Like all other women I thought that there couldn’t be much improvement in the same old task of washing dishes.” This quote by Christine Frederick in 1912 speaks so much truth about the way women lived before the 1920s. Many women had believed that they were sought out to stay at home and be the regular housewife that the American people portrayed them to be. None of them probably believed that they would soon get the privilege to vote, have a job, or to even dress a little less modestly. They would soon come to the realization that their way of life would be changed when the 1920s came rushing in. It is thought that the new freedoms given to women in the 20s helped in their rise of new fashions and in the initial shock of their newfound power
Despite the creator’s of Modern Family effort to portray a progressive view of American families, the show still accentuates outdated female stereotypes and gender roles; reinforcing gender characteristics, patriarchy and hegemonic masculinity. In contrast to its title, Modern Family promotes traditional gender roles and stereotypes of women, which result in the portrayal of an inaccurate image of the female, and weakens the stance of women in today’s U.S. society.
A lady of 1920 would be astounded to realize that she would be recognized as "another lady." Numerous progressions would enter her life in the following ten years. Huge changes for ladies occurred in governmental issues, the home, the working environment, and in instruction. Some were the consequences of laws passed, numerous came about because of recently created advancements, and all needed to do with changing states of mind toward the spot of ladies in the public eye.
After a while women began feeling dissatisfied. They would keep quiet because they thought they were wrong since they reached their goal of becoming the ideal housewife. They had good husbands, children, a house and all the stuff that came with being a good housewife. But all of that didn’t seem to be enough, and some felt their lives being
Society has had this concept of what women’s role in life should be since the beginning of time. For as long as anyone can remember, humanity expected women to stay at home, attend the men’s needs, and take care of household duties. Since society has evolved, women have more freedom, rights, and respect from others. However, there is still a small percentage who think women have a distinct place in life and shouldn’t drift from their “path”. In Twin Peaks and “Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?”, women were treated as if they were irrelevant and melodramatic.
The Progressive Era of the early 1900s was a period of economic growth in the United States. Millions flocked to the cities like New York in pursuit of wealth, freedom, and a chance at making a better life for themselves and their families. As a prime focus during the Progressive Era, women challenged social and political barriers, which led to their empowerment and a new female political agenda. Women began to become more prominent in the workplace and by 1920, nearly 25 percent of employed women had office jobs or worked as a telephone operator (Eric Foner, Give Me Liberty! An American History Volume 2, 700). The growth in female employment inspired women to seek a career and independence rather than the confinement of marriage and domesticity. Throughout the first two decades of the 1900s, the rise of female empowerment led to a multitude of changes in legislation concerning women and equality. Such major changes did not occur immediately though. Reformation had to begin locally.
In this episode of Empire, Cookie, Andre, and Hakeem decided to join together and create their own record label in order to compete with “Empire”. When Cookie told her son, Jamal, this information, she was very cutthroat as if to say “We are going to take you and your father down”. My idea of what the theme of the show is has changed from last week. The theme of the show, as it relates to black women, is that black women may be diverse but one thing that they all have in common is greed and making sure that they are successful in their own right. Anika has more of a proper corporate background than Cookie, who is a former drug dealer, and the two always seem to clash with their different personalities, but, the two both want what’s best for themselves and the company. This was exhibited last episode when Anika was willing to sleep with the investor and throughout the whole first season as Cookie was willing to turn her sons against each other and against their father, Lucious, in order to gain control of “Empire”. The theme of the show communicates that the target audience are minorities between the ages of 18 and 30. The show is essentially about a hip hop
During the 1950s the American economy was overflowing by good wages, opportunities for jobs, a multitude of goods, and profits. However, there were expectations in the society and roles were expected to be taken by individuals. There was a myth that women were content by dedicating their lives to being mothers and housewives. Nevertheless, not all women were eagerly to take that role. At this time, women were expected to raise kids, cook, be a good wife, and stay home; when in reality, they wanted to have equal rights and explore their own abilities and talents outside of housework and motherhood. They were tired of uneven rights and wanted to break the society expectation of the perfect stay at home
The American family of this decade has slowly changed. There have been major changes to our culture and families way of life. Families consisted of a stay at home moms and the breadwinner father that went to work every day.