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Learning to Love Form 1040Two Cheers for the Return-Based Mass Income Tax$
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Lawrence Zelenak

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780226018928

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: September 2013

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226019086.001.0001

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The Return-Based Mass Income Tax in Popular Culture

The Return-Based Mass Income Tax in Popular Culture

(p.83) Six The Return-Based Mass Income Tax in Popular Culture
Learning to Love Form 1040

Lawrence Zelenak

University of Chicago Press

This chapter explores how radio and television situation comedies (from the 1940s to the present) and New Yorker cartoons (from the late 1920s to the present) have treated modern income tax. In the older sitcoms (roughly from the 1940s to the mid-1960s), the theme of the return-filing process as promoting fiscal citizenship features prominently. In more recent sitcom episodes, attitudes toward return-based taxation are considerably less positive. The New Yorker tax cartoons resemble the sitcom tax episodes in their focus on the federal income tax, to the virtual exclusion of all other taxes.

Keywords:   taxes, taxation, new yorker, comics, radio shows, television shows, situation comedies, public attitudes, fiscal citizenship

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