Speaking your truth : the unique experiences that construct African American male counternarratives / by Milanda Alane Curry.
The purpose of this qualitative research study was to explore the ways in which family, school, and community environments contribute to the academic success of young African American males. During a three-month period, in-depth individual and focus group interviews were conducted with four African American males between the ages of 25-35 who excelled academically despite adversity and are considered successful. The participants were also asked to identify at least one person in their lives who were considered important sources of support. The perspectives of these male participants on how they overcame adversity and achieved success are essential for identifying and understanding the support structures that facilitate and foster support in young African American males. Ideally, the results of this study may enlighten the development of interventions, programs, and counseling practices focused on creating and enhancing the personal and environmental attributes that promote successful outcomes for other African American males. Findings from the present study revealed that shielding factors across multiple contexts of these males’ lives contributed to their success despite adversity. Four themes emerged from participants responses: principles instilled during adolescence have an impact on success, parental/role model support had an important effect on success, overcoming adversity contributed to success, and society’s negative perception of African American males play a role in challenging and creating successful men. Recommendations for useful applications and future research are included.
Curry, Milanda Alane