Sunday, November 8, 2009

Tuning in to Black Male Stereotypes

By Segun Esan

Is there a stereotype of the African-American male? This question was put to international students at McDaniel College Budapest, as it was to college students in the US. The results make for an interesting comparison with statistical data and the personal experience of this reporter, a Nigerian studying in Budapest.

Fast, tall, loud, athletic, hair in cornrows, speaking in a different dialect were all stereotypes pronounced by students at a US college and recorded by Youtube contributor Inst322. Savage, violent, amazingly strong and not caring about right and wrong, are all attributes of the “black brute stereotype” recorded by Abagond, a New Yorker who blogs about African-American issues.

Is there some truth to any of these? Reports show that more than 44 percent of the total population of US prision inmates are African American and 1 in 20 are currently incarcerated, according to US Bureau of Justice Statistics. Research was conducted to determine the IQ among European-Americans, African-American and Asian-Americans. African-American came last having the lowest IQ average, according to the American Civil Rights Review.

A report by The Civil Rights Project at Harvard showed that only 43% percent of about 3 black male high school students graduated in 2005, with the rate for college graduates are even lower. With the Hiphop music industry growing daily, and having rappers like Nas, Notorious B.I.G, and 50 Cent (all former drug dealers) as the face of it, no wonder education seems unattractive to African American males says Lily Kun a Hungarian American. A look at some American sports such as basketball, and football, finds the majority of the players black. Young black males watching this all want to grow up to be like Lebron James and Terrell Owens says Richard Ross an African American student in McDaniel college.

Being black in Europe, meanwhile, has its own stereotype. This reporter has experienced a core of three. Black in Europe, you are assumed to play basketball and be good at it. When a black man steps on to a basketball court, every stops to see what the black guy will do. Black friends who know not a thing about basketball get the same attention. Being black in Europe means you must love hip-hop or - better still – be are a rapper yourself. This reporter loves hip hop but can`t rap. Some black friends dislike rap, but love soft rock, and, drum and bass. Lastly, being black in Europe means you smoke weed. Black males report people often approaching them to see if they had weed to sell, or to find out where it could be found. “I`ve never smoked weed before in my life,” is a response that is greeted by expressions of disbelief.


Mona said...

I like the second paragraph; a very honest, simple and clear comparison.
It was interesting to me that you didn’t write your own idea because it’s hard for me to resist it which is wrong 
Why did you mention something about the IQ level in the third paragraph as an answer to this question: “Is there some truth to any of these?” Did you mean that African-Americans have low IQ and that’s why 44 percent of the total population of US prison inmates are African Americans? Maybe it is a good idea if you could mention something about this IQ test from the other point of view too (such as “African-American Civil Rights Movement”) OR if you could connect it clearly with the next paragraph (education problem); it would give a fair result. I’ve read something about this IQ test issue before. Have a look at this website
. It’s proven that in the same environment the gap between African-American kids’ IQ and the other ones is zero!
“Being black in Europe means you must love hip-hop or - better still – be are a rapper yourself.” This is lovely 

Richard said...

first of all, i was completely misquoted in this piece. i want a retraction and a published apology. :) no, really...

1st and 2nd paragraphs are great. good setup to the piece. the next paragraph is a bit murky for me. the stats don't seem to be conclusive of anything in particular, nor are they qualified by the author at all. there have been countless studies like this. why should i believe this one in particular? reports by whom? who did the research? how did they go about finding the average IQ of a whole race? who were the test subjects? you get the point.

i like how the author uses himself as a source on black stereotypes in europe. after all, the author is black and lives in europe, so his experience is relevant.

Felix said...

Interesting topic you're talking about. I think you discussed it mostly well. ''Fast, tall, loud, athletic, hair in cornrows, speaking in a different dialect'' you say is pretty recognizable but I've also heard bold, lazy and drug dealing. It might be sounding more objective if there's also negative character, which you find every race. Dealing you mention later on in the text. I have to say that your chances are better when you ask a black man for it.

Gabi Hollows said...

This was another good piece to read. It was nice to have a quote from the author himself as this gave the article a personal touch and feeling towards it. It was good to include stereotyping in Europe, it kept the article more relevant to where we are.

Anonymous said...

My friend and I were recently talking about how modern society has evolved to become so integrated with technology. Reading this post makes me think back to that discussion we had, and just how inseparable from electronics we have all become.

I don't mean this in a bad way, of course! Societal concerns aside... I just hope that as technology further advances, the possibility of downloading our brains onto a digital medium becomes a true reality. It's one of the things I really wish I could encounter in my lifetime.

(Posted on Nintendo DS running [url=]R4i[/url] DS BlogServ)