During our #BCM240 class this week, we discussed our discoveries of our interviewees memories towards television.

Both my parents although only 40 and 42 (which everyone thought were really young!) had experienced the transition between black and white TV to colour TV. Not too sure of how to start this weeks blog post, I read through Luke Erik Lassiter’s development of how he came to understand collaborative ethnography. Drawing on Glen Hinson, a researcher focused on African American expressive culture, he looks at the comparison between reciprocal ethnography and collaborative stating, ‘In other words, it implies what it says: collaboration. There’s little room for error in interpreting this meaning.’

With this being said, I am therefore going to curate my classes blog posts regarding the ‘TV memories’ topic into one space. To help understand the different and similar memories that arise in a similar form as what Luke Erik Lassiter sets out his development.

‘At the time, my pop was working at Chrysler, which was a large distributor of colour TV’s in the mid 70’s. Because of that, my mum was one of the popular kids in town, being the first in her street to get a colour TV,’ states Jordan Forbes.

As we can see here and similar to my responses that I received between my parents, socio-economic status played a huge role between which TV you owned years ago, which may also of effected the way in which a family may experience the Television. For example my dad had a black and white TV in his room but remembers a childhood of always being outside, whereas my mum valued family bonding time, acknowledging it as a huge luxury.

Barbie, Annikas grandma says, “I love crosswords, puzzles and reading, but the TV allows me to switch off. I can retain information without thinking. I love watching shows about animals and the world around me, because now I’m too old to go and see some of those things for myself.”

This answer became quite apparent in my class, many students recalled their interviewees mentioning the booming interest in travel during the time the TV was introduced. Even now many programs are used to promote tourism. This can be further supported by a paper written by Claudia-Elena Tuclea.

During a conversation with her mum, Kaysha uncovers the dynamics of the way her mum grew up with and TV and siblings, stating she often had to ‘endure’ shows that she didn’t want to watch due to her dad being in charge of the TV. This is interesting to see, the TV is controlled by someone older than you. Looking on other blogs this week it was interesting to see that most of the interviewees growing up, would only be able to watch what they wanted if someone older didn’t want to watch it. This kind of power play is similar to the stereotypical ‘breadwinner’ mentality, very different to the way many watch TV today…

Charlotte Allen my BCM tutor, engaged the class to think critically about the way in which the dynamics of family have changed. Now we juxtapose family traditions in front of the TV, instead using the TV as a way of connecting with family, we now separate into different rooms because we have the choice of what we want to watch on multiple TV’s in one household.

Another subject we looked at during class was the idea that we engage with shows on a much more sophisticated viewing point than what we did back then, as well as engaging differently due to age. Similarly to my younger brother, he hasn’t grown up without ever knowing technology, due to this, he can engage and understand in a way those who haven’t always grown up with technology do not.

For more comparisons have a look at Susan’s blog post, she does an awesome job!


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