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A New Musketeer

While the theater world argues over color-blind casting - using black actors in Shakespeare, for example - the advertising world adds color to reflect a diverse audience of consumers. Sometimes this simply means not thoughtlessly making all faces white in a commercial representing everyday scenes. Here the line between realism and tokenism can be blurred. Sometimes ads with black characters, for instance, are made for markets of black customers.

Lately there's a healthy trend toward diversity in ads directed at the general market. For example, one of Alexander Dumas's 19th-century Three Musketeers has become black in humorous ads for 3 Musketeers candy bars. Dumas, whose grandmother was black, might enjoy the fun. We all look forward to days when diversity is taken for granted.

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