The primary aim of this project is to conduct developmental research on the socialization practices employed by African American families and to understand the processes by which African American children are prepared to participate successfully in the society-at-large. Through the process of socialization, individuals learn the attitudes, skills, and values necessary to function adequately in society. The existing literature on the normative developmental experience of African American children is quantitatively and qualitatively inadequate. Moreover, family and environmental influences have been largely ignored in previous empirical work on personal and group identity development in African Americans. Given that the existing data on the normative development of African American children is inadequate or in many areas non-existent, the research goals are to (1) identify socialization practices utilized by African American parents; (2) determine normative developmental processes and outcomes for African American children; (3) determine which developmental outcomes are valued by African American parents; and (4) relate differential personality and behavioral outcomes to various socialization practices employed. The proposal is designed as a five year cross-sectional and longitudinal project. Two hundred African American males and two hundred African American females (i.e., fifty of each gender ages 6, 9, 12 and 15), as well as their parent/caregiver, teacher, and a peer will participate in this study. A combined structured/exploratory approach will be employed. The current research program has already implemented a series of studies to develop and validate socialization constructs using a Q sort procedure. The Black Family Process Sort (BFPS) is an instrument designed to assess differential socialization practices among African American families, to ascertain variable patterns that pertain to racial identity, discipline, family communication, and values. This new and innovative method will be employed to investigate racial orientation (group identity), parenting processes and developmental outcomes within our sample.
|Mandara, Jelani; Murray, Carolyn B (2002) Development of an empirical typology of African American family functioning. J Fam Psychol 16:318-37|
|Mandara, J; Murray, C B (2000) Effects of parental marital status, income, and family functioning on African American adolescent self-esteem. J Fam Psychol 14:475-90|