Personal Diary

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Personal Diary logo from BET

Personal Diary[1] was a half-hour TV series that aired on Black Entertainment Television which profiled notable African-Americans.[2] This TV series was an attempt to broaden the viewer demographics of B.E.T. by offering content not based primarily on music / entertainment performances or videos, but content that highlighted historical moments or significant achievements through a first-person, narrative style.

Two signature characteristics distinguished Personal Diary from other TV interview programs. The first was that the questions posed to the featured guest were never heard during the episode, giving the impression that the guest was relaying a stream of thoughts rather than participating in a typical question-and-answer interview. The second was the extreme close-up technique used in the taping of the episode, where the guest's face was prominently shown in frame throughout the episode.

Guests who appeared on the show included educator Marva Collins, Rosa Parks, Ramsey Lewis, Shirley Chisholm, and Barbara Jordan.[3]


  1. ^ Mentioned in B.E.T. article in Museum Of Broadcast Communications
  2. ^ Cohen, Janet Langhart (2005). From Rage To Reason, p.227-228. Kensington. ISBN 0-7582-0394-2.
  3. ^ Cohen, Janet Langhart (2005). From Rage To Reason, p.228. Kensington. ISBN 0-7582-0394-2.