Publication Date

4-15-2017

Advisor(s)

Indira Karamcheti

Major

American Studies (AMST)

Language

English (United States)

Abstract

This thesis seeks to address Sesame Street’s shift to HBO by comparing and analyzing differences between the first few seasons of the show and the 46th season of the show. Analysis focuses on three primary factors: the show’s stated mission and desired educational outcomes; the physical set of the show, the representation of characters, and their movement through the set; and the specific content of the show’s segments. This paper compares each of these factors from the early show and from Season 46 and analyzes them within the cultural climates of their respective eras. In doing so, it exposes Sesame Street’s shifts over time to demonstrate that they have come at the expense of support for the show’s original, underserved target audience.

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