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Week 7: Blog Assignment Aim : to create timeline that communicates to a reader the key dates that are referenced in the Malik reading, and that links these dates to significant events (media history and/or broader social events), plus media examples or an image for each date/event.

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Week 7: Blog Assignment

Aim: to create timeline that communicates to a reader the key dates that are referenced in the Malik reading, and that links these dates to significant events (media history and/or broader social events), plus media examples or an image for each date/event.

Ref: Malik, Sarita (2002 [1998]) ‘Race and Ethnicity: The Construction of Black and Asian Ethnicities in British Film and Television’ in Briggs, Asa & Cobley, Paul (eds.) The Media: An Introduction. pp 357 – 368.


1996: Commission for Racial Equality Conference on Channels of Diversity

  • “Few academics have disputed that the media, in general, have been very selective in their portrayal of Black and Asian people. Many have attributed this to the lack of ethnic minority people in key-decision making positions within media industries” (p358)
  • Mid 1980s: Black people in British Television event, Cinema City, Norwich
  • “A series of debates in which many argued about the limitations of discussing race and representation” (p359)
  • 1996-1998: Goodness Gracious Me (BBC)
  • “The British-Asian comedy team rework well-versed stereotypes of Asians”
  • “Positive images can also be stereotypes, and stereotypes can, in fact, be knowingly reproduced as forms of resistance” (p359)


November, 2nd, 1936: BBC first transmitted television

  • “The decade when the medium was installed on a wide-scale basis. This, together with the mass migration of people from Asia, Africa, and the Caribbean, was to produce a historically-complex relationship between art and life, between the media and Black-British ethnicity.” (p360)

  • 1995: First full-length television documentary programme
  • “To examine the problems faced by black immigrants in Britain. This programme was called Special Enquiry: Has Britain been a colour bar?”

1964: Black marries white

  • 1965: The negro next door
  • 1958: People in trouble: Mixed marriages
  • Documentary programmes that focused on ‘racial problems’ in British society from ‘our’/the (White) audiences point of view. They provoked emotive responses from many white viewers who felt that it was a defence of black people in its acknowledgement that racial discrimination existed in Britain.
  • 1965: A play called Fable addresses the issue of British race relations
  • John Hopkins marked a radical use of form and content compared to the dominant representations of ‘race’ and hallmarked documentary realism deployed in race relations.
  • 1958-1978: BBC show, The black and white minstrel show
  • This show was referred to as one of the most offensive recurrent images of Blackness. During it’s time running, there were very few alternative images of Black and Asian people on British television.


1970: Black people begin to use the media as a forum to ‘answer back’ to years of verbal negation and visual absence in the British media.

  • 1979: Babylon was a short series specifically targeted to young Black Londoners and the London minorities.
  • 1979: Skin was a 30 minutes documentary series aimed at Asian and African Caribbean communities who were generally seen to be united by discrimination in housing education and employment. (p363)
  • Television and its effects became central to cultural criticism and many Black and Asian people became more vocal and cohesive in their criticism of the media’s racial bias. Slots such as the BBC’s Open Door attempted to ‘redress the balance’ by expressing otherwise under-represented viewpoints (p363)

1977: Black programming was built into the structure of Channel 4

  • It was the first time that someone had been specifically appointed to commission programmes for a non-white audience British audience
  • 1980s: Channel 4 had built up a large number of ‘black programmes’
  • These formed a specific part of its weekly schedule. These included Black on Black, and Eastern Eye.


1980: Many black british films continued the tradition and extended the framework established by film-makers such as Horace Ove (Baldwin’s Nigger, 1969, Reggae, 1970, and Pressure, 1975)