Jul 09 2014
If you only watched mainstream media you would probably not realize that the fastest growing ethnic group in the United States is Latinos. Whether it is television, movies or news, Latinos as a group are very poorly represented in the mainstream media despite the fact that their demographic now comprises 17 percent of the entire US population and they are now the majority group in both California and New Mexico.
A new comprehensive report called ‘The Latino Media Gap’ from Columbia University’s Center for the Study of Ethnicity and Race, shines a light on the severe under-representation of Latinos in the media, both in front of and behind the camera.
The study found that despite their increasing numbers and purchasing power, Latinos often find themselves marginalized with stereotypical roles like maids or criminals. Whites are freely cast in roles which ought to be played by Latinos, and when it comes to Hollywood’s television or film writers, directors and producers, Latinos are hired in minimal numbers. Shows which feature leading Latino men have almost completely disappeared and among the top 10 movies last year there were no Latinos in lead roles. In mainstream television news, stories centered around Latinos are shown less than 1% of the time and the coverage which does takes place is often about criminals.
GUEST: Frances Negrón-Muntaner, Director of the Center for the Study of Ethnicity and Race, and the lead investigator of the report, ‘The Latino Media Gap.’ She is also an award winning film maker, writer and scholar
Click here to read the study.