From hiding in cabinets to comparing size

532630_10151363301460129_1326829498_nMy Grandad

Television has changed dramatically  over the past century from being non existent to filling an entire wall in a house. Once a television set would be hidden away in a family room behind cabinet doors compare this image to  current living rooms which will generally have a large LED /LCD/ 3D television mounted on a wall or sitting on top of a cabinet. Once it seemed as though people felt shame for owning a television, however, today it seems people feel pride and pride themselves in the size of their television.

Though how true is my statement that people once felt ashamed? When I asked my Grandad (Joe) about his first memorable experience  with a television set he was able to quickly recall one. Grandad remembered the time when the Queens coronation was on television, he was still in England and his family was one of the first in the street to have television.  He recalls the entire street coming down and packing into his living room to watch the coronation of the Queen. Therefore, it appears that actually having a television set made your family popular as shown by my Grandad’s family.

Therefore, my statement earlier can be debated as families such as my Grandad did not hide their television but rather shared it will their neighbors, so why did people hide it? As Anonymous 2009*, stated it takes up space and people do not want to look at it unless it is on then;
‘they want a front row seat’
Perhaps this is the general reason. People thought the television set was ugly and did not flatter their living rooms when guests came over.

My Grandad also recalls dinner always being at a dinner table and never in-front of the television as dinner was family time and the television was a distraction. However, he did note that he currently often eats now in his recliner chair with a television dinner table in-front of him, and also now has Foxtel. Where he watches his favorite shows from the 60’s with fond memories of the characters but not whom he was with or where he was at the time of first watching these shows.

When I asked my Grandad if their was any acceptable behaviors his parents expected from him while they watched Television he recalled his parents love of game shows and the news and when these where on everyone who wished to have a conversation had to leave the room or his Dad would yell and place his hand behind his ear as if trying to better hear the television. My Mum (Dianne) also confirms this  her Grandad (my Grandad’s dad) continued with this practice when she was a child.

Therefore, television has been a large part of the Grandad’s life as he was very young when his family received their first television. Also his family demonstrated that they were not  ashamed of owning a television but rather shared their fortune and embraced the technology.



*Anonymous2009, Jan 22. Cabinet keeps television cornered. Times News.

Joe 2013, Interview notes, conducted on the 19th August 2013


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