THE STORIES OF EIGHT BLACK MALES PURSUING DOCTORAL DEGREES EXAMINED THROUGH THE LENSES OF CRITICAL RACE THEORY: DON’T BELIEVE THE HYPE; DON’T LIVE THE HYPE
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Building upon the tenets of critical race theory (CRT) this qualitative study examines the life histories of eight Black males in their journey to obtain a doctoral degree. The research questions guiding the study include: What are the life histories of eight Black males pursuing doctoral studies? How can we make sense of their life experiences through the lenses of critical race theory? What can be learned from their life histories that can inspire other Black males and inform the policies and practices of institutions of higher education? Data collection sources consist of ethnographic interviews, documents, artifacts, and the researcher’s journal. Narrative analysis techniques coupled with CRT as the study framework serve as the focus for the analysis of the data. Study findings are presented mainly in two chapters; Chapter Four focuses on the three participating Black males who were over the age of fifty and takes a closer look at their life histories through the themes of overt racism, internalized oppression silenced voices, and the intersection of racism with other forms of oppression. Chapter Five presents the life histories of the remaining four study participants through the themes of covert racism and affirmative action as a manifestation of interest convergence. Chapter Six, Hype to Hope as a Path Toward Change, highlights the essence of the participants’ life histories; provides implications and suggestions for taking action toward the possibility for change; and presents ideas for future research.