A study was conducted by two communications professors at the University of Massachusetts, Sut Jhally and Justin Lewis. The professors wanted to ascertain the impact of “The Cosby Show” on its audience.
Professor Lewis stated, “I guess there’s good news and bad news for ‘The Cosby Show.’ The good news is we found unprecedented levels of affection for the show amongst both black and white audiences. I mean, this for white people was the first time that they had really been able to invite a TV family into their homes and really welcome them and really identify with them. The downside is that it seems to have created a misleading impression amongst people that things like affirmative action are no longer necessary because here we have now a number of upscale black characters on TV who seem to be making it without any problem.”