Dr. Deirdre McKinley

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Title White Noise/Black Boys: Shaping the Black Male Identity
Author McKinley, Deirdre
School Doane University
Degree EdD
Date 2018
Adviser Dr. Marilyn Johnson-Farr
Pages 150
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Abstract The purpose of this phenomenological study was to describe and analyze the Black male identity as shaped by the context of white noise at predominately white schools in the U.S. Midwest. The two overarching research questions asked (1) how socially constructed identities of race and gender impact Black boys within the educational system and (2) who Black boys think they are relative to who others say they are. Data were collected through interviews and artifacts. Interviews were conducted among six Black boys who were attending or had recently graduated from a white school environment as of the fall of 2017. Participants’ ages ranged from 13-22 years. The interviews were transcribed and analyzed using the phenomenological procedures of coding, and clustering of themes. Four themes emerged relative to the study’s focus on cultural conditioning, Black identity, and desired perceptions: his-story untold, love being Black, wanting to be able to express their Blackness and wanting to be seen as human. Untold Black his-story exemplifies cultural conditioning. Relative to their racial identity, Black boys love being Black and want to be able to express that Blackness. Relative to their desired perception, Black boys want to be perceived as human first. White noise strongly motivates the social construct of race which infiltrates our education system. Recommendations for future studies include interviewing Black parents, and white teachers. Recommendations for educational systems include recruiting Black male teachers and administrators, providing district-level training in cultural awareness and courageous conversations about race, implementing programs for Black boys, and highlighting the accomplishments of Africans and African Americans other than slavery and the civil rights movement in curricula.

 

 
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