Past Event

Why so Scandal-ous? Representations of Black Women in Media

Join us for an intimate conversation with WBEZ’s Natalie Moore, UIC scholar Jennifer Richardson, DePaul scholar and author Francesca Royster, and others.

From “Kerry Washington is making history in hit ABC show ‘Scandal” by Tanzina Vega 

“‘Scandal’, now in its second season, has been a success for ABC. Last week the show had 3.52 million viewers aged 18 to 49 and 8.4 million total viewers. Among the group aged 18 to 34 it typically ranks first in its 10 p.m. Thursday time slot. One reason for that success is the casting of Kerry Washington, who became the first African-American female lead in a network drama in almost 40 years….Her casting has prompted discussion among academics and fans of the show about whether ‘Scandal’ represents a new era of postracial television, in which cast members are ethnically diverse but are not defined by their race or ethnicity.”

Questions for Consideration 

How does or doesn’t “Scandal” represent a new era of postracial television and is color blind casting truly possible? Actress Kerry Washington has asked: “Are audiences ready to have the stories that we tell on television to be more inclusive? Are we ready for our protagonists to represent people of all different genders and ethnicities?” — what do you think? How does Olivia Pope’s character break barriers in prime time TV and/or how does it reinforce stereotypes of Black women?

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