Custom «Television and American Culture» Essay Paper Sample

Television and American Culture

How Culture Crash is Depicted on TV

In modern America, the culture is not shaped by interactions between families, communities and traditions but rather over satellites. Today, TV shows play a significant role in the destruction of genuine American culture and create a new one that can be characterized as being quite harmful, only reflecting what appears in those TV shows, and no longer being expressed by the traditional paintings and arts we had before. This phenomenon can be called “culture crash” and it refers to the erosion of American culture on Television.

Generally speaking, culture can be divided into material and non-material. Non-material cultures in particular refer to norms and peoples’ way of life, which encompasses language, rituals and many more. The erosion of the American culture must be viewed as a matter of great concern since it influences the identity of American people to a great extent. The values cherished by the Americans guide morals within the society, as well as establish an orderly and responsible society. Therefore, the aim of the current paper is to discuss how the variety of TV shows in today’s American have led to Culture clash within the nation.

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One of the TV shows that contribute to the erosion of American culture significantly is called Desperate house wives. The show is a combination of several foreign elements that never existed within the genuine American culture. The show Desperate Housewives has led to the erosion of the Institution of marriage in America (McCabe & Akass, 2006). Several strange elements depicted in the show provide a certain base for mature married American women, and encourage them to experiment and apply those elements in real life, thus often leading to the end of their marriages. The show portrays the satisfaction of sexual desires of desperate housewives that results in the erosion of American values. The show revolves around four different female characters: one of the main characters plays a role of a woman in divorce, while the others play the roles of sexually preoccupied to the certain extent. Eddie, one of the protagonists, for example, allows herself to jump into Owens' arms (male character of the show) and denudes herself by taking off her towel (Merskin, 2007).

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The show is very immoral and communicates the wrong message to the young American children. Women in the show play the role of sex slaves, or, in other words, objects of sex that can be tossed by men at any time. The single neighbor who is a man also widens the morality gap as he portrays promiscuity within the society. The very foundation of American culture clearly does not reflect the scenario in Desperate Housewives. The show reveals Eddie as a seduction tool. The manner in which she undresses and remains in her underwear as a way of seducing men is a decay of morality. In fact, several advertising companies withdrew their sponsors from the show, including the National Football League and the Philadelphia Eagles.

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Sex and the City is another show the moral and cultural crash of which cannot be left unmentioned. The show publically represents the street life on the television, while the main characters disguise themselves as being prostitutes (Arthus, 2003). Indeed, the show is aimed at encouraging prostitution in America. Sex and the city presents socially undesirable behaviors that were prohibited by the American culture (Bushnell, 2014). The exposure of sexual matters to the public as opposed to preserving the private life is by itself a crash of the American culture. The depicted in the show usage of sex tools like vibrators by women destroys the natural order and meaning of sex, as well as is a bad example for young people who observe the women almost the age of their mothers engaged in using vibrators. The program advocates for oral sex and lesbianism, ideas that were traditionally restricted. The contribution to the culture crash made by Sex and the City is therefore undeniable.

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Another TV show that has changed American culture in Mad Men, which has been broadcasted for almost a decade now. It addresses changes in fashion and the erosion of patriarchy in American society. The male former privilege to the detriment of women is now finished. However, the decline of patriarchy does not suggest that sexism is dead. Men’s supremacy is no longer a culture in America. The death of patriarchy is causing a lot of confusion both in marriages as well as the societal structures (Krich, 1989). The traditional adulthood is also slowly wavering away. The implication of such idea in children growing without really knowing whether they are mature or not, as there is no prescribed measure of adulthood. Such scenario leads to next generation moral decay. A lot of Americans seem uncomfortable with patriarchy and cherished parental authority even though many people detested it, and that is being ruined. Whether right or wrong, fathers remains to be the part of a culture (Varan, 1998) and must be respected.

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In conclusion, culture crash is represented in different forms. It may be a crash of the material culture or non-material culture. As discussed in this paper, such well-known TV shows as Desperate Housewives, Sex and the City and Madmen eroded American culture significantly. The shows have destructed the morals, enhanced early sexual life of children and ruined the traditional sexual interactions between men and women. The values that underlie the institution of marriage have also collapsed dramatically. The TV shows mentioned above should therefore be avoided to watch.

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