Sunday, August 8, 2010

The other Mad Men (From The Root)

The start of a new season of "Mad Men" has had its loyal followers wondering what's next for the talented but conflicted alpha male Don Draper as he leads a group of disaffected executives in the launch of a new ad agency on Madison Avenue.

In its past seasons, the Emmy-nominated series deftly revealed personal and professional dramas against a backdrop of the social and political changes in Kennedy-era America. Now, with season four opening after Kennedy's death, the question is, will "Mad Men" tweak its focus and more fully show life in America during the period of the struggle for civil rights, the most tumultuous domestic issue of that era?

It's been accepted more or less as a truism that black people didn't work on Madison Avenue in the 1960s. But facts are stubborn things. There were black people in advertising even then, some (a few) in high places. Contrary to the popular assumption, blacks in that era met with success and challenges on Madison Avenue, like everywhere else. ...

Read the rest at The Root

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