African american families under fire

Ethnographic views of family strengths

Elizabeth Harry, Janette K. Klingner, Juliet Hart

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

61 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This article focuses on the discrepancy between school personnel's negative stereotyping of African American families and the family information gleaned by ethnographic research. Using findings from a 3-year ethnographic study of the special education placement process in a culturally diverse urban school district, we describe the general atmosphere of negativity that prevailed among school personnel with regard to African American families living in poverty. The article focuses on the families of three case study students who were referred to special education. Home visits and ethnographic interviews with caregivers revealed family strengths that were neither known nor tapped by school personnel. We interpret the findings in terms of the power of cultural capital and the discrepancy between the schools' perceptions of such capital and the capital actually possessed by families.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)101-112
Number of pages12
JournalRemedial and Special Education
Volume26
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 2005

Fingerprint

African Americans
Special Education
Economics
personnel
school
special education
Stereotyping
House Calls
Poverty
Atmosphere
Caregivers
cultural capital
caregiver
American
Interviews
Students
district
poverty
Research
interview

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education

Cite this

African american families under fire : Ethnographic views of family strengths. / Harry, Elizabeth; Klingner, Janette K.; Hart, Juliet.

In: Remedial and Special Education, Vol. 26, No. 2, 03.2005, p. 101-112.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Harry, Elizabeth ; Klingner, Janette K. ; Hart, Juliet. / African american families under fire : Ethnographic views of family strengths. In: Remedial and Special Education. 2005 ; Vol. 26, No. 2. pp. 101-112.
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