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BG24 Newscast
April 18, 2024

  • Jeanette Winterson for “gAyPRIL”
    “gAyPRIL” (Gay-April) continues on Falcon Radio, sharing a playlist curated by the Queer Trans Student Union, sharing songs celebrating the LGBTQ+ experience. In similar vein, you will enjoy Jeanette Winterson’s books if you find yourself interested in LGBTQ+ voices and nonlinear narratives. As “dead week” is upon us, students, we can utilize resources such as Falcon […]
  • Poetics of April
    As we enter into the poetics of April, also known as national poetry month, here are four voices from well to lesser known. The Tradition – Jericho Brown Winner of the Pulitzer Prize, Brown visited the last American Association of Writers and Writing Programs (AWP 2024) conference, and I loved his speech and humor. Besides […]
Spring Housing Guide

Television needs diversity

With the Emmys airing on Sunday and my in-class viewing of Miss Representation, I’ve been thinking a lot about who we portray on TV and how we portray them. TV is so prevalent in all of our lives, and binge-watching has become common-place. We don’t exist in a vacuum. So the things, people and portrayals we see on TV do make an impact on how we, as a culture, see the world. Of course, opinions are going to vary widely and people are not consuming the same kinds of television, but the trend in representation is still severely disappointing.  

We see a lot of straight white men on TV. They lead many shows and make up a good majority of the background characters too. If those who don’t fit into that very specific niche of people don’t get to see themselves on TV, it becomes disheartening. When people in groups of privilege don’t see people of other groups on TV, they have a harder time acknowledging and empathizing outside of their group.

“Symbolic annihilation” is a term coined for people who are not represented in media, and they wonder where they fit into our culture. We need to see women in positions of power, people of color portrayed without stereotypes, people with disabilities present with agency and trans people existing on TV at all. Again, the way we see people on TV shapes the way we see them in life.  

It is also obvious that we need diversity behind the camera. People who do not identify in a certain group can write characters that do fall into that group but the portrayal can be messy or fall flat. We need people to represent their identity on-screen so they are done right. With that, the industry, and therefore society as a whole, gets a new perspective. People, to an extent, write what they know. And audiences get a taste of that experience when watching it or reading about it. This is so important and needs to be included within television. Every person deserves to see themselves in a positive way on-screen, because we are constantly being bombarded with new media. We empathize with the people we see on TV and this empathy can extend to people we see in real life too. 

With positive representation people can feel hopeful and empowered. I remember leaving the movie theater after seeing the new Ghostbusters and thinking: “This is how boys must feel when leaving movies all the time”. Whether the movie was a cinematic masterpiece or not didn’t matter because it was a film by women, about women, for women. It felt good to see people like me being portrayed as smart, brave and non-sexualized. Representation in the media shapes how we see ourselves and if we broaden that lens and let all people be portrayed on television, the world just might be a little more tolerant.  

So, support shows written by women and people of color. Support shows that feature a wide range of people. Exciting, funny and smart shows exist with diverse casts. The more popular they get, the more similar things will start popping up. It’s time media reflects our reality more accurately.  

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