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Articles 1 - 21 of 21

Full-Text Articles in African American Studies

Before Black Boys Are Criminalized?: Race, Boyhood, And School Discipline In Early Childhood, Calvin Rashaud Zimmermann Jan 2018

Before Black Boys Are Criminalized?: Race, Boyhood, And School Discipline In Early Childhood, Calvin Rashaud Zimmermann

Publicly Accessible Penn Dissertations

The image of the “criminal” black male is one that shapes the social experiences of black males in U.S. society. The racialized and gendered representation of black males as criminal, primarily through the depiction of the “thug,” functions to justify various forms of social marginalization including disproportionate school suspension, mass incarceration, and even death. Research and policy often describe the source of these problems as a product of black males’ culturally deviant behaviors, and thus, minimize the role of race and racism in producing these outcomes. Thus, social and educational discourse frequently depict black males as the source of ...


Becoming Owners: African American Property Ownership, Berean Building And Loan, And The City Of Philadelphia, 1890 To 1920, Ricardo Orlando Howell Jan 2017

Becoming Owners: African American Property Ownership, Berean Building And Loan, And The City Of Philadelphia, 1890 To 1920, Ricardo Orlando Howell

Publicly Accessible Penn Dissertations

This dissertation traces the contours of African American property ownership in in the city, in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. How did a moment of political deterioration during the 1890s foster African-American movements for civic accountability and political mobilization in the Quaker City? This study connects material achievement and the pursuit of property ownership among African Americans to the growth of church-based, minister-led, and property-focused associations. Historians have not often considered the connection between ostensibly moral-missioned institutions, the property they and their communities owned, and later political expressions. By raising and contextualizing a heretofore unexamined set of nearly ...


Sound Business: Great Women Of Gospel Music And The Transmission Of Tradition, Nina Christina Öhman Jan 2017

Sound Business: Great Women Of Gospel Music And The Transmission Of Tradition, Nina Christina Öhman

Publicly Accessible Penn Dissertations

From the 1930s to the present, women have played instrumental and visible leadership roles in the remarkable growth of African American gospel music. Through both creative and entrepreneurial activities, these women paved the way for the expansion of an emotive sacred music expression from the worship practices of southern migrants to audiences around the world. This dissertation focuses on the work of three cultural trailblazers, Mahalia Jackson, Aretha Franklin, and Karen Clark Sheard, who stand out in the development of gospel music as virtuosic vocalists and pivotal figures whose sonic imprints can be heard both in sacred songs performed in ...


Swamp Blues: Race And Vinyl From Southwest Louisiana, Evelyn Levingston Malone Jan 2016

Swamp Blues: Race And Vinyl From Southwest Louisiana, Evelyn Levingston Malone

Publicly Accessible Penn Dissertations

The swamp blues have lain in the margins of music history despite foundational, if brief, contributions to 1960s popular music broadly and British blues-rock specifically. The canon is not stylistically unified, but organized around a musical sodality from the independent record industry of Southwest Louisiana between 1954-1966. Why has this regional music been forgotten, and why are the few traces of its history all overseas? Through an investigation of the postwar industrial and economic forces that reshaped the South Louisiana cultural territory into a Southeast-Texas-and-Southwest-Louisiana musical byway, this dissertation reveals how migrations of African-American workers and a “Crawfish Circuit” of ...


Empire Unbound - Imperial Citizenship, Race And Diaspora In The Making Of South Africa, Khwezi Mkhize Jan 2015

Empire Unbound - Imperial Citizenship, Race And Diaspora In The Making Of South Africa, Khwezi Mkhize

Publicly Accessible Penn Dissertations

"Empire Unbound" is an exploration of the history and politics of empire and imperial citizenship that went into the making of South Africa before the Second World War. The making of racial difference in South Africa is often located in the temporal and political terrain that is Apartheid (1948-1994). In this dissertation I look to the history of South Africa in the long nineteenth century and recuperate the frameworks of empire and imperial citizenship in making sense of struggles for belonging. Empire, both as a form of government and imaginary, invokes a degree of scale that exceeds the nation-state. It ...


Ambitious Confusion: Recovering The Unthought In Contemporary Memorials To The Antebellum South, Aundeah Joann Kearney Jan 2015

Ambitious Confusion: Recovering The Unthought In Contemporary Memorials To The Antebellum South, Aundeah Joann Kearney

Publicly Accessible Penn Dissertations

Ambitious Confusion: Recovering the Unthought in Contemporary Memorials to the Antebellum South

Aundeah J. Kearney

Thadious M. Davis

This dissertation examines how contemporary authors and artists who craft memorials to the antebellum South reconcile the presence of disruptive artifacts with narratives of history they inherit as members of a national collective, actively engaging with shared memories of critical moments in the nation’s past. In this study, I identify ambitious confusion as a generative state which moves beyond mere recognition of conflicting histories toward a memorial that successfully manages the reintegration of previously excised artifacts of history. I borrow the ...


Too Fast: Coloniality And Time In Wylers Of St. Kitts And Nevis, Jessica Swanston Baker Jan 2015

Too Fast: Coloniality And Time In Wylers Of St. Kitts And Nevis, Jessica Swanston Baker

Publicly Accessible Penn Dissertations

Wylers, the popular music most strongly associated with the annual Christmas carnival in St. Kitts and Nevis, is generally regarded as â??too fast.â?? And yet, while wylers is broadly understood as â??too fast,â?? metric analysis of representative songs does not indicate a major difference in tempo or beats per minute between wylers and other, widely accepted, popular Caribbean music such as Trinidadian Power soca or Dominican bouyon. Why, then, is wylers perceived as â??too fast?â?? What is at stake in making this claimâ??that is, too fast for whom or for what? This dissertation ...


Violating Maternity: Servitude, Sexual Abuse, Lynching And The (Un)Making Of The Black Maternal Subject, Michele Sharon Frank Jan 2015

Violating Maternity: Servitude, Sexual Abuse, Lynching And The (Un)Making Of The Black Maternal Subject, Michele Sharon Frank

Publicly Accessible Penn Dissertations

VIOLATING MATERNITY: SERVITUDE, SEXUAL ABUSE, LYNCHING AND THE (UN)MAKING OF THE BLACK MATERNAL SUBJECT

Michele Sharon Frank

Herman Beavers

This dissertation argues that African American women writers have identified the black maternal figure as a primary symbol of black cultural trauma. Through an examination of selected texts from the nineteenth to twenty-first centuries, I isolate writers’ and dramatists’ explorations of servitude, sexual abuse and lynching as systemic, historical violations of blackness and womanhood that have shaped black women’s maternal experiences. African American women writers’ depictions of black women’s experience of and resistance to such systemic violations of ...


Policing, Race, And Politics In Chicago, Peter Constantine Pihos Jan 2015

Policing, Race, And Politics In Chicago, Peter Constantine Pihos

Publicly Accessible Penn Dissertations

Policing, Race, and Politics in Chicago asks how local political institutions structured the relationship between race and policing in Chicago. It follows Renault Robinson, the Afro-American Patrolmen’s League, and their allies, as they challenged both a political order in which black politicians and voters played critical roles and a Police Department that had the most black officers of any in the United States by the early 1960s. Their activism impelled recognition that Richard J. Daley’s Democratic Party and city government simultaneously incorporated and subordinated black urbanites. Daley’s political monopoly forced the League to seek leverage outside of ...


Black Semiosis: Young Liberian Transnationals Mediating Black Subjectivity And Black Heterogeneity, Krystal A. Smalls Jan 2015

Black Semiosis: Young Liberian Transnationals Mediating Black Subjectivity And Black Heterogeneity, Krystal A. Smalls

Publicly Accessible Penn Dissertations

From the colonization of the “Dark Continent,” to the global industry that turned black bodies into chattel, to the total absence of modern Africa from most American public school curricula, to superfluous representations of African primitivity in mainstream media, to the unflinching state-sanctioned murders of unarmed black people in the Americas, antiblackness and anti-black racism have been part and parcel to modernity, swathing centuries and continents, and seeping into the tiny spaces and moments that constitute social reality for most black-identified human beings. The daily living and theorizing of a small group of twenty-something young people from Liberia provide the ...


Staging Civil Rights: African American Literature, Performance, And Innovation, Julius B. Fleming Jr Jan 2014

Staging Civil Rights: African American Literature, Performance, And Innovation, Julius B. Fleming Jr

Publicly Accessible Penn Dissertations

This dissertation examines the relationship between African American literature and performance during the modern Civil Rights Movement. It traces the ways in which the movement was acted out on the theatrical stage as creatively as it was at those sites of embodied activism that have survived in intellectual and popular memories: lunch counters and buses, schools and courtrooms, streets and prisons. Whereas television and photography have served as primary ways of knowing the movement, this project turns to African American literature, and the live performances it inspired, to provide a more complex framework for analyzing the movement's cultural arm ...


The Stories We Tell: Narratives Of Spiritual Development Of Black Undergraduates, Keon Monte Mcguire Jan 2014

The Stories We Tell: Narratives Of Spiritual Development Of Black Undergraduates, Keon Monte Mcguire

Publicly Accessible Penn Dissertations

THE STORIES WE TELL: NARRATIVES OF SPIRITUAL DEVELOPMENT AMONG BLACK UNDERGRADUATES

Keon M. McGuire

Shaun R. Harper

John L. Jackson, Jr.

Discourse surrounding religion in the American public sphere, especially as it relates to young adults, primarily exists within church decline narratives; or the declining significance of faith traditions and institutions. Yet, when a framework that dismisses the role of religion and spirituality is utilized for interpreting and making sense of young adults' spirituality, interesting, revitalizing, and innovative ways in which young adults are doing spirituality and religion remain obscured. Thus, scholars must employ a different set of theories and ...


Living Proof: Transnational Black Youth Theorizing Racism, Justice, And Education, Chike Mcloyd Jan 2014

Living Proof: Transnational Black Youth Theorizing Racism, Justice, And Education, Chike Mcloyd

Publicly Accessible Penn Dissertations

Based on eighteen months of ethnographic research in a high school E.L.L. classroom, this study contributes to the fields of new literacies studies and critical pedagogy by showing how transnational Black youth theorize and negotiate intersections of racism, justice, and education. Drawing on a multidimensional approach for understanding how racism is reproduced and resisted across various domains of power (Collins, 2009), I show on how two young men from Haiti theorize the U.N. and INGO occupation of post-earthquake Haiti; a disjuncture between how Africa and Haiti are (mis)known in the U.S. and students' lived realities ...


Black Sophists: A Critique Of Demagoguery, Garry Bertholf Jan 2013

Black Sophists: A Critique Of Demagoguery, Garry Bertholf

Publicly Accessible Penn Dissertations

This dissertation investigates the narrative strategies and performative devices of African-American politics in the post-civil rights era. My inquiry focuses on demagoguery--a term dating from classical antiquity--in order to implicate it in African-American political discourses, in particular those of Tavis Smiley's former State of the Black Union, 2000-2010. Indeed, I posit that Smiley's former annual event is an important site for thinking about modern black demagoguery and the aestheticization of black politics. Through close readings and original transcriptions of Louis Farrakhan (b. 1933), Cornel West (b. 1953), and Michael Eric Dyson (b. 1958), I show that the inevitable ...


African Americans From "Back Yonder": The Historical Archaeology Of The Formation, Maintenance, And Dissolution Of The American Enclave In Samanã¡, Dominican Republic, Kristen R. Fellows Jan 2013

African Americans From "Back Yonder": The Historical Archaeology Of The Formation, Maintenance, And Dissolution Of The American Enclave In Samanã¡, Dominican Republic, Kristen R. Fellows

Publicly Accessible Penn Dissertations

By the end of 1825, 6,000 African Americans had left the United States to settle in the free black Republic of Haiti. After arriving on the island, 200 immigrants formed an enclave in what is now Samaná, Dominican Republic. The Americans in Samaná continued to speak English, remained Protestant (in a country of devout Catholics), and retained American cultural practices for over 150 years. Relying on historical archaeological methods, this dissertation explores the processes of community formation, maintenance, and dissolution, while paying particular attention to intersections of race and nation. Fieldwork took place in the Spring and Summer of ...


Who Stole The Soul: Black Student Sociopolitical Solidarity In The Twenty-First Century, Brian F. Peterson Jan 2013

Who Stole The Soul: Black Student Sociopolitical Solidarity In The Twenty-First Century, Brian F. Peterson

Publicly Accessible Penn Dissertations

The 1960s and `70s marked the most historic transformational period of Black college student enrollments and sociopolitical presence at predominantly White institutions in the United States. Research on Black student solidarity and social movements typically refers back to this era, with very little attention given to the ways that today's Black college students - the beneficiaries of the previous Black campus activist efforts - continue this work. This study explores contemporary Black student sociopolitical solidarity and the role that the institution plays in shaping it.

The following questions guided this study: How has Black students' sense of activism evolved from the ...


The Mobocratic City: Race, Space And Citizenship In Nineteenth Century Philadelphia, Andrew Crocco Jan 2013

The Mobocratic City: Race, Space And Citizenship In Nineteenth Century Philadelphia, Andrew Crocco

Publicly Accessible Penn Dissertations

This dissertation focuses on publics and the public sphere to argue that communication theory should investigate connections across discourse, space, and practice in the creation and maintenance of publics. I chose antebellum Philadelphia as my test case for two reasons. First, theorists such as Jurgen Habermas have identified the antebellum period as the time when the public sphere ceased to be maintained through face-to-face relations and became connected by means of the news media. Second, tremendous social and political conflict also characterized this period when categories considered by communications theory to be discursively constructed, such as "race" and "nation," were ...


What Is On The Other Side Of The Tracks? A Spatial Examination Of Neighborhood Boundaries And Segregation, Rory Kramer Jan 2012

What Is On The Other Side Of The Tracks? A Spatial Examination Of Neighborhood Boundaries And Segregation, Rory Kramer

Publicly Accessible Penn Dissertations

Space has always been a critical component of the sociological study of racial inequality, yet it has rarely been the central focus of empirical projects. Studies of segregation, an inherently spatial concept, have relied on techniques that are aspatial introduce an unknown amount of error into their results. This project extends standard spatial analytic techniques to the sociological study of racial segregation, using Philadelphia as its case study. By introducing non-euclidean kernel density analysis to the study of racial segregation, the project explores how a more visual and more spatially informed approach changes the geography of racial segregation. A more ...


Raising Race Questions: Whiteness, Education And Inquiry In Seven Teacher Case Studies, Ali Michael Jan 2012

Raising Race Questions: Whiteness, Education And Inquiry In Seven Teacher Case Studies, Ali Michael

Publicly Accessible Penn Dissertations

Race matters in schools. In addition to the highly publicized racialized achievement gap, race has historically determined who can access education and what kind of education people receive. Additionally, teachers and students bring racial identities to school that impact how they relate to one another, to the school community and to the curriculum. Finally, schools are places where race gets constructed. This study uses qualitative and action research methods to do research with teachers—rather than on teachers—as they learn about how and why race matters in education—and what that means for their classrooms. Because 85% of the ...


"We Are The Revolutionaries": Visibility, Protest, And Racial Formation In 1970s Prison Radicalism, Dan Berger Dec 2010

"We Are The Revolutionaries": Visibility, Protest, And Racial Formation In 1970s Prison Radicalism, Dan Berger

Publicly Accessible Penn Dissertations

This dissertation analyzes black and Puerto Rican prison protest in the 1970s. I argue that prisoners elucidated a nationalist philosophy of racial formation that saw racism as a site of confinement but racial identity as a vehicle for emancipation. Trying to force the country to see its sites of punishment as discriminatory locations of repression, prisoners used spectacular confrontation to dramatize their conditions of confinement as epitomizing American inequality. I investigate this radicalism as an effort to secure visibility, understood here as a metric of collective consciousness. In documenting the ways prisoners were symbols and spokespeople of 1970s racial protest ...


Art Fronts: Visual Culture And Race Politics In The Mid-Twentieth-Century United States, Erin P. Cohn May 2010

Art Fronts: Visual Culture And Race Politics In The Mid-Twentieth-Century United States, Erin P. Cohn

Publicly Accessible Penn Dissertations

ART FRONTS: VISUAL CULTURE AND RACE POLITICS IN THE MID-TWENTIETH-CENTURY UNITED STATES Erin Park Cohn Supervisor: Kathy Peiss Art Fronts argues that visual culture played a central and understudied role in the African American freedom struggle in the middle part of the twentieth century. In particular, it traces the political lives and cultural productions of a generation of visual artists, both black and white, who seized on the Depression-era ethos of art as a weapon to forge a particular form of visual activism that agitated for social, political, and economic equality for African Americans. Participating in the proliferation of visual ...