Event Title

Deconstructing Hypermasculinity: Combatting the War on Black Men

Presenter Information

Aliyah Abu-Hazeem, Oberlin College

Location

Science Center A155

Start Date

10-28-2016 3:30 PM

End Date

10-28-2016 4:50 PM

Research Program

Creating Connections Consortium (C3-LADO) Summer Research Training Program, University of Chicago

Abstract

Images of Black men have historically and contemporarily been linked to connotations of bestial, contemptuous, aggressive, predatory, and violent otherworldly entities. These conceptions of Black men continue to be sensationalized in the news and distorted within history books. Similarly, much of the existing sociolegal scholarship on gun violence in urban, impoverished communities of color has delineated Black men as lawless, inhumane, and unsalvageable. Scholars have concluded that these Black men’s ‘unusual proclivity’ to gun violence can be linked to deviant notions and reproductions of masculinity. However, these sweeping narratives of hypermasculinity disregard the social milieu that fosters Black men’s engagement in gun violence. This research project intends to satiate the current gaps in the literature concerning Black men’s rationale for engaging in gun violence. Furthermore, this project aims to dispel the myth that Black men are engaging in gun violence because they have an unnatural proneness for committing illicit behavior. To achieve this, I will demystify the pervasive racialized linkage of hypermasculinity to Black men by examining the ways in which their social context serves as a ‘breeding ground’ that fosters their engagement in illicit activities.

Notes

Session II, Panel 5 - Blackness & Bias

Major

Sociology; Law & Society

Project Mentor(s)

Marcelle Medford, Sociology, Connecticut College
Daphne John, Sociology

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Oct 28th, 3:30 PM Oct 28th, 4:50 PM

Deconstructing Hypermasculinity: Combatting the War on Black Men

Science Center A155

Images of Black men have historically and contemporarily been linked to connotations of bestial, contemptuous, aggressive, predatory, and violent otherworldly entities. These conceptions of Black men continue to be sensationalized in the news and distorted within history books. Similarly, much of the existing sociolegal scholarship on gun violence in urban, impoverished communities of color has delineated Black men as lawless, inhumane, and unsalvageable. Scholars have concluded that these Black men’s ‘unusual proclivity’ to gun violence can be linked to deviant notions and reproductions of masculinity. However, these sweeping narratives of hypermasculinity disregard the social milieu that fosters Black men’s engagement in gun violence. This research project intends to satiate the current gaps in the literature concerning Black men’s rationale for engaging in gun violence. Furthermore, this project aims to dispel the myth that Black men are engaging in gun violence because they have an unnatural proneness for committing illicit behavior. To achieve this, I will demystify the pervasive racialized linkage of hypermasculinity to Black men by examining the ways in which their social context serves as a ‘breeding ground’ that fosters their engagement in illicit activities.