Week 2: How Television transformed the average lounge room

Both of my parents grew up in the 60’s. By their own admission, their respective families were conservative to say the least. Even when television was first introduced it challenged the ideals of a Christian upbringing. For the first time in my parents lives, people outside of their regimented daily life were now influencing how they viewed and perceived the world.

Dinner time was strictly family time, and if you wanted recreation then you simply went outside or played a board game. Until talking to my parents about this topic I rarely had considered how sheltered the upbringing of previous generations had been. The introduction of modern technologies gives us unprecedented access to quite literally anything we desire. If I was to summarise how I spent my time when I was ‘bored’ at home, it would be fair to say most if not all the activities I do to cure this boredom rely on some form of modern technology that wasn’t available when my parents were growing up.

The first thing to notice in any new lounge or entertainment room is the presence of a television, and how it is predominantly the focal point of this room. The lounges, power points and windows on modern houses; support the notion that the television is inherently one of the main features of a family home.

My dad recalled to me that the lounge room in his childhood was a place that the family would sit to read books, play board games and sit in front of the fireplace during the winter. As he entered his teen years and the family decided to  introduced their own television into the house, he noticed the dynamic of the lounge room was completely changed in order to accommodate the presence of a television. Additionally he recalled the time spent in the lounge room seemingly changed from ‘some of the time’ to ‘all of the time’ which to me indicates the magnitude of television’s introduction to family homes. I’m certain that my dad’s recount of these events during the 60’s and 70’s is no different to an innumerable amount of people during the same era.

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About alexdebs

Second year Bachelor of Communications and Media studies student at the University of Wollongong. I am an aspiring journalist with a passion for sport, music and travel.
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