Television Sitcoms: 1950's Today Essay
Fifty Years in the Making A genre of entertainment programming was developed and became known as the situation comedy or 'sitcom'. Sitcoms have evolved in response to lifestyle trends and have changed drastically over the past fifty years. The sitcom format is based upon two main types: the element of family drama mixed with sibling rivalry and the element of sexual exploration. Family sitcoms specialized in family drama and focused on internal family roles of the parents, children and siblings. Sticking to the same basic formula, sitcoms show a problem solved and a lesson learned in a half -hour, usually with a strong foundation of laughable humor. Traditional family roles in 1950's sitcoms held the father as the head of the household and major breadwinner, and the wife as the classic domestic housekeeper. Sitcoms of the 1950's emphasized and exemplified good values and conveyed them throughout the half -hour, in which they aired. From the stay at home housewife, to the single or divorced parent, sitcoms have developed and established a part in every American family's living room over the past fifty years.
With their birth in the 1950's, situation comedies mean just what their name suggests. In the beginning, the basic recipe for the perfect sitcom was this: Take a domestic family, stir in the funny antics of the children or neighbors, and add in a minor problem, which usually could be solved within the half hour. Simmer between commercials, and voila! Comedy and a new lesson learned every week (Seplow). Wait another week and the characters are back to where they were the week before, only faced with a different, traditionally comical situation. The predictability of the sitcom was the basis for its humor. The audience knows the characters will always react and respond to situations the way they are expected to. To the audience, sitcoms were "the glue that stuck them to the television" (Johnson).
However, there are many different types of sitcoms that were made throughout the years. There are: Domcoms (domestic comedies), which featured family life "All in the Family," Kidcoms (kid comedies) such as "Happy Days," couplecoms "I Love Lucy," SciFiComs, "Bewitched," ethnicoms, or shows regarding a certain ethnic group, "The Jefferson," and careercoms or shows that revolve around a character's workplace and life "The Mary Tyler Moore Show" (Christian). One of the first ethnicoms on television, "Amos 'n' Andy" was seen as either "the funniest or offensive show" on television (Christian). The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) pulled their show from the air during the Civil Rights Movement, because it portrayed African Americans in a negative way. Of the first successful couplecoms, "I Love Lucy" is one of the few aired in 1951 that lasted more than two years. This program was the first sitcom that was...
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What is a Classification Essay?
In a classification essay, a writer organizes, or sorts, things into categories.
Three Steps to Effective Classification:
- Sort things into useful categories.
- Make sure all the categories follow a single organizing principle.
- Give examples that fit into each category.
This is a key step in writing a classification essay. To classify, or sort, things in a logical way, find the categories to put them into. For example, say you need to sort the stack of papers on your desk. Before you would put them in random piles, you would decide what useful categories might be: papers that can be thrown away; papers that need immediate action; papers to read; papers to pass on to other coworkers; or papers to file.
Thesis Statement of a Classification Essay
The thesis statement usually includes the topic and how it is classified. Sometimes the categories are named.
(topic)...(how classified)...(category) (category) (category)
Ex: Tourists in Hawaii can enjoy three water sports: snorkeling, surfing, and sailing.
How to Write an Effective Classification Essay
- Determine the categories. Be thorough; don't leave out a critical category. For example, if you say water sports of Hawaii include snorkeling and sailing, but leave out surfing, your essay would be incomplete because surfing is Hawaii's most famous water sport. On the other hand, don't include too many categories, which will blur your classification. For example, if your topic is sports shoes, and your organizing principle is activity, you wouldn't include high heels with running and bowling shoes.
- Classify by a single principle. Once you have categories, make sure that they fit into the same organizing principle. The organizing principle is how you sort the groups. Do not allow a different principle to pop up unexpectedly. For example, if your unifying principle is "tourist-oriented" water sports, don't use another unifying principle, such as "native water sports," which would have different categories: pearl diving, outrigger, or canoe racing.
- Support equally each category with examples. In general, you should write the same quantity, i.e., give the same number of examples, for each category. The most important category, usually reserved for last, might require more elaboration.
Common Classification Transitions
- The first kind, the second kind, the third kind
- The first type, the second type, the third type
- The first group, the second group, the third group
Remember: In a classification essay, the writer organizes, or sorts, things into categories. There are three steps to remember when writing an effective classification essay: organize things into useful categories, use a single organizing principle, and give examples of things that fit into each category.
Below are some sample classification essay topics:
- Classification of historical events in US
- Countries classification (territory, popularity, etc)
- Sport Cars Classification
- Most Popular TV Shows in America
- Classification of Physiological Diseases
You can choose essay topic for your classification essay you are familiar with.