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Starring Mandela and Cosby – Media and the End(s) of Apartheid - Chicago Scholarship Online
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Starring Mandela and Cosby: Media and the End(s) of Apartheid

Ron Krabill


During the worst years of apartheid, the most popular show on television in South Africa—among both Black and White South Africans—was The Cosby Show. Why did people living under a system built on the idea that Black people were inferior and threatening flock to a show that portrayed African Americans as comfortably mainstream? This book takes up this paradox, revealing the surprising impact of television on racial politics. The South African government maintained a ban on television until 1976, and according to this book, they were right to be wary of its potential power. The medium, it conte ... More

Keywords: The Cosby Show, Black people, South Africa, African Americans, television, Nelson Mandela, globalization, apartheid, racial politics, Bill Cosby

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2010 Print ISBN-13: 9780226451886
Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: March 2013 DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226451909.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Ron Krabill, author