Television . . . we have less to fear from government restraints than from television glut; that in fact, we have no way of protecting ourselves from information being disseminated by corporate America."12
Here we are then! The real problem is that television is part of that evil monolith called corporate America that Postman perceives as single- mindedly pumping images, sounds, dramas, sitcoms, sports, news, public affairs, and talk shows into an anesthetized public. Getting to the heart of his argument that television victimizes us all, Postman concludes that "we have no way of protecting ourselves from information disseminated [on TV]."13
But can anyone seriously argue that Pat Robertson 700 Club, Murphy Brown, Hard Copy, N.Y.P.D. Blue, ABC's Monday Night Football, MTV's Singled Out, Court-TV, a natural history documentary on the Discovery Channel, or a classic movie channel are the same "universal curriculum" ( Gerbner) and "information disseminated" ( Postman)? Are we to believe that some single, monolithic entity called corporate America is orchestrating the entire range of TV programming as a unified assault upon human sensibility? Such a line of thinking has nothing to do with the realities of the artistic, economic, cultural, and societal complexities of television at the dawn of the twenty-first century.
Questia, a part of Gale, Cengage Learning. www.questia.com
Publication information: Book title: Understanding Society, Culture, and Television. Contributors: Paul Monaco - Author. Publisher: Praeger Publishers. Place of publication: Westport, CT. Publication year: 1998. Page number: 72.
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