Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



First Advisor

Dr. Robert Carlson


The rapid growth of minority groups over the past few decades has dramatically changed the face of American society. Current census figures suggest that minority groups will exceed 50% of the total U. S. population by the middle of the next century. As a result of this rapid demographic change, interest has been rekindled in the issue of race on network television. The present study reviewed prime time dramas and situation comedies in 2003 to identify changes in the representation of minority characters in recent years. Major findings of the present study include the following. Minority characters continue to appear in prime time television programs and as primary characters less frequently than non-minority characters. However, progress has been made in how minority characters are portrayed in that stereotypic differences between minorities and non-minorities are lessening.


A Thesis Presented to the Department of Communication and the Faculty of the Graduate College University of Nebraska In Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree Master of Arts. Copyright 2005 Kenya E. Edwards.