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Thesis (M.S.)

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The purpose of this study is to compare television portrayals of Black and White families. It is my impressionistic observations that television differentially portrays its families along racial lines in stereotypic ways. The basic assumption underlying this research contends that negative racial stereotypes are reducible to actual psychological pathologies, measurable by degree of dysfunction observed in family dynamics. This nation was applied to Black and White television families and a content analysis study was designed based on four dimensions of family functioning dynamics: autonomy, communication, solidarity and acceptance. These areas of family functioning act as objective psychological criteria by which an extensive evaluation of television family dynamics could be made and assessed for degree of dysfunction.