The Impact of Black Masculinity on Identity Development and Sexual Attitudes of Inner-city Black Male Adolescents: An Ethnographic Analysis

Research output: Thesis or DissertationDissertation


Inner-city Black adolescent males face several social and health challenges. They compose
one of the highest risk groups for sexually transmitted diseases (STD) and generally lack adult
Black male role models, according to recent literature published in sociological journals.
Additionally, they contend with social stigmatization, failures in school and work, as well as
negative class and racial dynamics in their communities. All of these problems combined served
as the impetus for this study, especially since there is a general lack of knowledge about the
broader socio-cultural factors influencing the lives and decision-making processes of Black
adolescent males. This ethnographic study specifically focused on how health risks related to
Black youths’ identities as future men and beliefs about “ideal” forms of masculinity.
Additionally, there was a focus on ways in which Black male adolescents in inner-cities formed
identities and perceived themselves as future Black men. Through structured ethnography, this
research supported the idea that identity development and social contexts are major influential
factors in the lives of Black male youths, and both have broad reaching effects. This
understanding is necessary to provide a more appropriate context for social and public health
intervention programs geared toward this population.
Original languageAmerican English
StatePublished - 2006


  • Medicine and Health Sciences
  • Nursing
  • Public Health
  • Sociology
  • Medicine and Health
  • Race and Ethnicity

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