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Class Act

  • Date Submitted: 08/01/2011 12:43 PM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 56.5 
  • Words: 779
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In “Class Act” Rebecca Traister identifies the ethnic and cultural stereotypes, economic differences, and class undertones exemplified in Ugly Betty. Traister describes Ugly Betty as subversive television because it seeks out to undermine pre-established judgments about other classes, races, and cultures. Unlike most shows, she explains, Ugly Betty explores both sides of the class hierarchy. She states Ugly Betty is consumed with difference and the ways we acknowledge or misinterpret it. She also highlights that Ugly Betty shines light on sexism in the workplace, but also provides hope to those that would rather succeed through work, and not love.

ABC’S comedy soap-opera, Ugly Betty, links two contrasting worlds. The primary locations on the show, Manhattan and Queens, are just a few miles apart; however they encompass a chasm in class status. In “Class Act” Rebecca Traister highlights the class struggle and ethnic and cultural stereotypes in Ugly Betty. Subversive television shows, like Ugly Betty and the Cosby Show, doesn’t depict reality to some, but to me it does. Undermining pre-established judgments and stereotypes about minorities and other things that aren’t similar to our own is more honest than reality itself. I applaud Ugly Betty because it puts the class struggle in perspective, exposes sexism, but most importantly gives hope to people that would rather succeed through work.
The most daring thing a person can be is tolerant; tolerant to other religions, cultures, races, and any ideas that aren’t similar to our own. People tend to fear what they don’t know, or dislike what they don’t understand. Traister asserts, “…Betty offers a bracing look at how these class struggles are further fraught by cultural diversity and intolerance,..” (697). Intolerance, I believe is the root of all discrimination and racism in America.
It’s shockingly terrifying to think a class hierarchy exists in a country where “all men are created equal”,...


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