spiritual perspective on tv

Change—and love: the common threads

AS THE ARTICLES IN THIS ISSUE of the Sentinel show, in 2002 family can mean anything from single moms and dads to traditional, two-parent households, to interfaith husbands and wives, to grandparents raising an infant right through to adulthood.

American Family, the first drama series featuring a Latino cast to air on television in the United States, airs weekly on PBS. The series examines all the permutations of family that I've mentioned above, through the daily life of a Mexican-American family in East Los Angeles.

According to writer, producer, and director Gregory Nava, "The Gonzalez family happens to be Latino . . . [but] American Family is about everyone's family." Nava's strength here is in training his camera on both the stresses and surprisingly unifying moments shared among neighbors, families, and generations as they experience—in a variety of ways and levels of accommodation—the shift from old, understood traditions and values to a sometimes bewildering array of diverse lifestyles. The one constant in the Gonzalez family—as in all successful families—is love.

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In her true light . . .
April 8, 2002

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