The Representation Of Diversity In Herman Gray's A Different World

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After the first season of A Different World, the spin-off series from The Cosby Show, writers and produces made much needed changes to the sitcom in order to accurately represent black college life. It was after those changes in the characters and actual dialogue of the show that made the series the first of its kind and largely successful. Herman Gray poses these two questions, “why the show should be characterized as exemplary, even distinctive, for its representation of diversity and engagement with black cultural politics? And on the question of blackness, why not frame this show in the same terms as those I call assimilationist and pluralist?” To answer these questions Gray uses the shows characters, writing, setting, and themes, to explore how the show represented blackness during at time of cultural and social …show more content…
He discusses the way in which A Different World presented real life issues and concerns facing African Americans, while at same time being entertaining and educational. The writers and producers steered away from the whiteness that was often seen on television; instead they brought the audience into a world of Blackness.
Unlike The Cosby Show, A Different World was able to show blackness in its many forms, through its casting of diverse characters. Unfortunately, the cast of The Cosby Show were mostly one-dimensional due to the lack of diversity in class, race, and the story line. The shows casting directors helped to not only creating a show in which the diversity among African Americans is displayed, but also a show in which the topic of racial color coding could be discussed. Other popular “black shows” during the 1980s and

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