Compare and contrast the values and actions illustrated in "Good Times" with real experience regarding family situations.

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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This is a challenging question for a couple of reasons.  The first would be that "Good Times" depicts the strength of family and the enduring quality that family unity can have in otherwise challenging times.  To counter this with the idea of "real world is different" suggests that family unity cannot be achieved.  That might be more judgmental than presuming than it can.  I think that where "Good Times" was ground- breaking was that it posited the idea that human beings do not have to be completely subject to the realities of economic conditions and social discrimination.  In this light, I think that "Good Times" opened discussion about the strength of family experience in light of reality.  Certainly, one could not argue that the issues the show depicted were not of reality.  Due to this, the show did have credibility that few others had and few others have experienced since.  The reality is that there were many situations in which the "real experience" of families were not that of Florida and James and their family.  However, it stands to reason that there were families whose "real experience" paralleled that of the Evans' family.  In this, one has to conclude that while the show was able to discuss real issues in an honest manner, it paralleled reality as well as provided a model that might have been different from reality.


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