This edition: Television History
For more than a generation, network television represented the ultimate in mass communication. Radio and film had offered mass audiences astonishing new choices to add to print media. Through television, the power of all the mass media experiences of the past came together in one major cultural force. For the first time, a single source could broadcast moving images with sound to millions of homes from coast to coast. Every evening, audiences in the United States watched variety shows, newscasts, dramas, comedies, and other network fare, separated by the walls of their houses, but united by the sounds and images they had simultaneously welcomed into their living rooms. Network television was at the center of how people collectively experienced American culture. This lesson is designed to provide you with a better understanding of the growth of television as an industry and the evolution of its relationship with the American people.