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This work examines the concept of blackness, how it has been performed on two different primetime television programs, The Cosby Show and Black-ish, and how black audiences in particular have responded to these representations of African-Americans. In analysis of The Cosby Show, I have mostly used secondary sources to distill the various positions viewers took regarding the show's blackness, which has in fact been the subject of much critical analysis. These works substitute for the extensive research that would have been necessary on my part otherwise between watching 200+ episodes and conducting long and detailed interviews. For Black-ish, however, no academic studies or analyses of the show have been conducted as of yet, therefore I have dealt with the show mostly as a primary source when discerning how audiences have received the show's representation of blackness. The focus of this research paper is not to differentiate between these two shows, but rather to gage their respective audiences' receptivity to revolutionary claims to blackness.


Winning Research Paper, Dean James E. McLeod Freshman Writing Prize, 2016