Assimilation Blues: Black Families in a White Community
What does it mean to be Black in a white, middle-class community? Is it the ultimate symbol of success? Or will one pay in isolation, alienation, rootlessness? What price must one pay for paradise? Is the price too high?Beverly Daniel Tatum, a renowned authority on the psychology of racism, interviewed Black families in depth to identify the sacrifices and achievements necessary to survive and prosper in a white community. For the Black citizens of “Sun Beach,” dual-income households, religious affiliation, and extended families help maintain stability. But with assimilation comes an insidious “hidden racism,” subtly communicated when Black children aren’t called on in class and revealed more fully in incidents of racial name-calling. By listening to the individual voices of these children and their parents, Dr. Tatum skillfully probes the complex questions of identity that arise for a visible people rendered invisible by their surroundings.
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able adults African-American asked BEVERLY DANIEL TATUM Black child Black children Black community Black families Black middle class Black parent Black peer group Certainly child childhood church close concern context coping cultural deal describes discussed economic environment example expected experiences expressed extended family members fact families of origin family stress family's father feel frameworks friends grandparents group identity hard husband identify important indicate Institutional racism interaction interviewed involved issue Japanese-American kind live McAdoo middle-class Black mother neighborhood nigger Nisei particular percent perhaps person personal identity predominantly White community private school problem question race race-conscious racial identity racism raised relationships relatives response role sample Sansei Santa Claus says segregated sense share situation social social class society Sun Beach families talk teach teachers there's things understand upwardly mobile values woman women