Pop culture is much maligned. But human beings have always told simple stories, stories that show us who we are, how to act, and all of the places we can go. For the vast majority of our history these stories were told around the fire. Today they are told in the glow of many billions of screens, our access points to a worldwide mediaverse that is telling every story, and connecting everybody with everybody.

Judge Judy moves people from red into amber…Dr. Phil moves people from amber into orange…and Oprah moves people from orange into green. I think there are some shows that move people from green into integral. One of them is Mad Men, which just had its finale. ~Jeff Salzman

Oprah Winfrey expands our identity into world-centric, even spiritual dimensions.  And sophisticated serial dramas like the Sopranos, Breaking Bad and Mad Men (which recently completed its six year run) provide morality tales as complex and powerful as classic literature.

New research out of the University of Southern California reveals that Americans consume media, both digital and traditional, for over fifteen hours per person per day. Waste of time? Much of it perhaps, but oh what a window we have on our world and each other.


“Why is Judge Judy so popular? Because she kicks ass. From an integral perspective what she is doing is civilizing people who are at the red, or egocentric, level of development.”