Event Title

Deconstructing Hypermasculinity: Combatting the War on Black Men

Location

King Building 323

Document Type

Presentation

Start Date

4-28-2017 1:30 PM

End Date

4-28-2017 2:50 PM

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 are being sensationalized in the news and distorted within history books. Similarly, much of the existing sociological 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. The social context is an important point of contention as it is causal to the success outcomes, or lack thereof, that Black men are afforded with. As this research will make clear, a scarcity in the availability of resources directly impacts Black men’s need to improve their livelihood– even by deviant measures. This research project will explore three key variables of social context: wealth disparity, social disorder, and the neighborhood climate that surround Black men living in Chicago’s urban, gun-stricken communities. Through isolating and exploring these factors, insights on the rationale(s) behind Black men’s disproportional involvement in gun violence will be interrogated.

Keywords:

gun violence, crime, hypermasculinity, urban violence, poverty, stereotypes

Notes

Session I, Panel 1 - Anti-Black | Racism
Moderator: RaShelle Peck, Faculty in Residence, Afrikan Heritage House

Link to full text thesis at OhioLINK ETD Center:
http://rave.ohiolink.edu/etdc/view?acc_num=oberlin1498669165452923

Major

Sociology; Law and Society

Award

Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellowship

Advisor(s)

Greggor Mattson, Sociology

Project Mentor(s)

Clovis White, Sociology

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Apr 28th, 1:30 PM Apr 28th, 2:50 PM

Deconstructing Hypermasculinity: Combatting the War on Black Men

King Building 323

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 are being sensationalized in the news and distorted within history books. Similarly, much of the existing sociological 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. The social context is an important point of contention as it is causal to the success outcomes, or lack thereof, that Black men are afforded with. As this research will make clear, a scarcity in the availability of resources directly impacts Black men’s need to improve their livelihood– even by deviant measures. This research project will explore three key variables of social context: wealth disparity, social disorder, and the neighborhood climate that surround Black men living in Chicago’s urban, gun-stricken communities. Through isolating and exploring these factors, insights on the rationale(s) behind Black men’s disproportional involvement in gun violence will be interrogated.