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Understanding How Cultural Messages are Passed Down in Black Families

By September 7, 2019June 14th, 2021No Comments

Role of the Black Family 

· Develop and affirm Black identity

· Explore and practice social roles

· Prepare and develop coping skills for racism and discrimination

· Provide foundational expectations concerning emotional, relational, and psychological expression and well-being

Challenges faced by the Black Family  

· Constant invalidation

· Cultural scrutiny

· Historical trauma

Strengths of the Black Family

· Kinship ties

· Spiritual rootedness

· Adaptability of family roles

· High achievement orientation

· Strong work orientation

Cultural messages and coping with racial trauma

Racial socialization

Black families and racial communication about racialized experiences

·          Cultural Pride (Be proud to be Black in the face of racism)

·          Preparation for bias (Society will treat you differently because your Black)

·          Promotion of mistrust (Institutions intentionally hurt Black people)

·          Egalitarianism-silence about race (We should or shouldn’t talk about race)

Two types of Racial socialization

Legacy Approach

· Describes the state of racial relations and offers “sayings” as advice for coping with racism (e.g., You have to work twice as hard to get half as much)

· Aspirational/informational

· Emphasize the importance of racial dynamics knowledge (e.g., racism exists but doesn’t offer skills to address the experience of racism)

Literacy Approach

· Ability to accurately read, rewrite, and resolve racially stressful encounters

· Emphasizes skill and practice before a racial event has occurred

Composed of three parts:

· Racial Stress Appraisal (What racist thing is happening?)

· Racial Coping Efficacy (Can I handle it?)

· Racial Coping Reappraisal (Did I resolve the racist situation?)

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