35690347 - Volume 19 ✤ Number 4 ✤ Summer 2008 ✤ pp....

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676 Volume 19 Number 4 Summer 2008 pp. 676–698 a Cultural Identifcation and Academic Achievement Among AFrican American Males Miles Anthony Irving Georgia State University Cynthia Hudley University of California, Santa Barbara According to cognitive and social developmental theory, success- fully structuring a multifaceted sense of self comprised of a mix of social, political, economic, and philosophical identities is one of the major accomplishments of adolescence (Marcia, 1980). African American adolescents grapple with the additional task of developing a racial/ethnic identity in an American social milieu that is often polarized along racial lines (Monteith & Spicer, 2000; Winant, 1998) and is replete with negative racial stereotypes (Hudley & Graham, 2001). Undoubtedly, African American iden- tity has been shaped by a history of oppression and marginalization in American society that dates from the 1600s, with the arrival of the Frst Africans in this country (Bogle, 1994). ±or example, scur- rilous depictions of incompetence, laziness, and aggression (e.g., Devine & Elliott, 1995) have their genesis in this country’s his- torical attempts to rationalize slavery and state-sanctioned racial terrorism. Tus, African Americans may interpret such demean-
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Copyright © 2008 Prufrock Press, P.O. Box 8813, Waco, TX 76714 summary Irving, M. A., & Hudley, C. (2008). Cultural identiFcation and academic achievement among African American males. Journal of Advanced Academics, 19, 676–698. Although most African Americans are aware of the importance of educa- tion, many still continue to suffer from poor school achievement. School failure, high rates of educational dropout, low college enrollment, over- representation in special education classes, and low standardized test scores reflect a pervasive problem of educational underachievement among African Americans. Our work with African American males reveals a positive relationship between cultural mistrust and oppositional cultural attitudes and an inverse relationship with outcome expectations, outcome value, and academic achievement. Cultural mistrust is a signiF- cant predictor of academic achievement. As African American males‘ mistrust increases, their academic outcome expectations decrease. As mistrust increases, oppositional cultural attitudes also increase. Students with high cultural mistrust, oppositional cultural attitudes, and low valu- ation for educational outcomes have lower expectations for the ben- eFts of their educational outcome. A presence of cultural mistrust and oppositional cultural attitudes clearly undermines educational out- come expectations. These Fndings have implications for educational research and practice, particularly concerning the education of African American males living in urban environments. Resistant cultural identity or cultural mistrust may be early markers of risk status for educational underachievement. School policies and practices that support identity development may help more African American youth cultivate a strong positive cultural identity that is consistent with academic achievement.
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35690347 - Volume 19 ✤ Number 4 ✤ Summer 2008 ✤ pp....

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