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It Takes a Village: Protecting Rural African American Youth in the Context of Racism
Journal of Youth & Adolescence
  • Cady Berkel, Arizona State University
  • Velma McBride Murry, Vanderbilt University
  • Tera R. Hurt, University of Georgia
  • Yi-fu Chen, University of Georgia
  • Gene H. Brody, University of Georgia
  • Ronald L. Simons, University of Georgia
  • Carolyn Cutrona, Iowa State University
  • Frederick X. Gibbons, Iowa State University
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Publication Date
Prior research demonstrates negative consequences of racism, however, little is known about community, parenting, and intrapersonal mechanisms that protect youth. Using a mixed-methods approach, this study illuminated linkages between positive and negative contextual influences on rural African American adolescent outcomes. Quantitative results provide support for Structural Ecosystems Theory, in that the influence of discrimination and collective socialization on adolescent outcomes was mediated by racial socialization and positive parenting. Parenting and community influences contributed to adolescent racial identity and self image, which protected against common negative responses to racism; including academic underachievement, succumbing to peer pressure, and aggressive tendencies. Qualitative results indicate that current measures of discrimination may underestimate adolescents’ experiences. Adolescents reported racist experiences in the domains of school, peers, and with the police (males only). Moreover, qualitative findings echoed and expanded quantitative results with respect to the importance of the protective nature of parents and communities.

This is a post-print of an article from Journal of Youth and Adolescence 38, no. 2 (2009): 175–188, doi:10.1007/s10964-008-9346-z.

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Springer Science+Business Media, LLC
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Citation Information
Cady Berkel, Velma McBride Murry, Tera R. Hurt, Yi-fu Chen, et al.. "It Takes a Village: Protecting Rural African American Youth in the Context of Racism" Journal of Youth & Adolescence Vol. 38 Iss. 2 (2009) p. 175 - 188
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