African American Males in Higher Education: Reframing the Issue

By Harris, Whitney G. | Black Issues in Higher Education, October 3, 1996 | Go to article overview

African American Males in Higher Education: Reframing the Issue


Harris, Whitney G., Black Issues in Higher Education


Despite the many problems that plague

African-American males, the practice of

classifying us as an "endangered species" has

always struck me as a convenient, but a

regrettable, sound bite. Granted, the current

data on African-American males on such

indices as college enrollment, prison statistics,

and college and high school completion rates

are dismal at best and frightening at worst.

However, like all sound bites, "endangered

species" not only overstates the case, it hides

a large portion of the real picture. Even a

cursory glance at the total reality will show

that thousands of African-American males are

achieving high levels of academic success.

This is especially true concerning higher

education, where African-American males

-- including students, faculty, and staff -- are

forced to deal with the same negative societal

issues as other African-American males. For

example, institutional and personal racism is

alive and well on college and university

campuses. Also, the lack of positive

African-American role models is a serious

problem. On most historically white

university campuses, most African-American

males are in low-paying service jobs. Even a

tenured full-professor, administrator, Roman

Catholic priest (like this writer) is often given

more than his share of the elevator space when

he shares it with white women on many

university campuses. So racism, favoritism,

and policies and practices of exclusion still

have a negative impact on African-American

males on college and university campuses.

Nevertheless, if we are going to improve

our lot, we must reframe the issues. We must

move from a deficient

"blame-the-victim" model to one that says not

only that we can be successful, but we WILL

be successful. We must begin by reframing our

perception of our status. Rather than seeing

ourselves as victims, we must see ourselves as

creators of our own destiny. Rather than

seeing ourselves as an endangered species, we

must draw' strength and courage from our 500

years 19 of struggling against -- and often overcoming

the hurdles of racism and other forms of

bigotry.

We must not allow others to cast us on the

endangered species list. If anything endangers

us, it is our passive acceptance of being

classified as endangered. Concretely, we must

not allow others to deprive us of academic

success.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

African American Males in Higher Education: Reframing the Issue
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.