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Acclaimed television producer Norman Lear laughs with distinguished author and Week One host Roger Rosenblatt Monday morning in the Amphitheater. The pair spoke about Lear’s roots, American society, and the interaction between politics and religion. Photo by Eric Shea.

Lear discusses ‘All in the Family,’ characters, politics in comedy

Roger Rosenblatt led a conversation with Lear that focused on the idea behind “All in the Family,” the show’s character Archie Bunker and Lear’s politics. A film about Lear and his shows — including “All in the Family,” “Maude,” “The Jeffersons,” “Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman” and “Good Times” — was featured before Rosenblatt began asking Lear about “All in the Family.”

The character Archie Bunker became a main point of discussion between Rosenblatt and Lear. Rosenblatt asked Lear about the type of character Archie was meant to be and the effect he had on the audience.

“ ‘Dangerous’ isn’t a word I’ve ever heard connected with Archie,” Lear said. “Archie was afraid of tomorrow. He was afraid of progress; things had been moving too fast for him.”

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