Nov 21, 2007
TELENOVELAS, POLITICS AND SOCIETY
Just like telenovelas can carry messages that promote health and the improvement of certain sociocultural problems (see my last post), these shows can also include political topics.
In Brazil, the vanguard of realist telenovelas, realism, politics and telenovelas have frequently walked hand in hand (see Realism and Politics in Brazilian Telenovelas by professor Mauro Porto). In Venezuela we have the cases of Por Estas Calles and Cosita Rica. In all these instances, telenovelas actively participated in the political conversation of their country of origin.
It's interesting to note that the serialized melodramatic format of telenovelas is being used in the U.S. not only to promote health and education in the Hispanic community (again, see my last post), but also for political purposes. In particular, the political campaign of Democrat Barack Obama is using a micro-telenovela consisting of three 4-minute episodes titled a Tu Voz, Tu Voto in an effort to win the primary election in the key state of California. In this way, telenovela-inspired formats have become the media format of choice when the goal is to reach U.S. Latinos: