Black Masculinity within Sports and Black Fraternities

To understand black masculinity within the Greek life we need to understand the paradigm it falls under. A paradigm that categories black men as hyper-masculine or emasculates them. It is argued that racism, colonialism and imperialism feminized and weaken black men and a concept was introduced as the “The Emasculation Thesis.” Frazier,1939, stated in his work, slavery and oppression led to the natural order of a black male family leading to a matriarchy. Researchers argue that black males not participating in a power gain with white males and due to constant mistreatment causing undermining black male strength, African American men are caught in a cycle of pathology. On the other end of the spectrum black male bodies are seen as hyper sexual or beast like. Black men are seen to be dangerous! Prior to civil rights movements black men were characterized as angry and were not able to control their lust in order to maintain white control over material resources, courtship and lynching. During the civil rights researchers argued that black men were an embodiment of anger in reaction to the denial of manhood that turn led to riots and black RAGE!Thus black men were seen as barbarism of the western culture. Emasculation and hyper-masculine leaves white, patriarchal and western concepts of gender and race pure and normalized. In some way shape or form black fraternities are seen to adopt these concepts of emasculation and hyper-masculine. Black fraternities try to attack and target other black fraternities as weak and denouncing them of their manhood in other words emasculating them. On the flip side being hyper-masculine as the Omegas is a plus showing that being a man is to be beast-like. Negative meanings associated with black masculinity are so deeply ingrained that even individuals as Donovan McNabb, who does not have a record, are entrapped by them. Scripting is how the media define, interprets and constructs black bodies. Scripting places his or her own world view onto another a view that has negative assumption, characteristics and behavior of African American men. Scripting leads to a negative portrayal of American American players that caused negative stereotypes of African American men dominate sports or even certain positions they can play due to intelligence. African American men are challenged to brake these “scripts” and to find their own identity within a space that constantly targets them negatively.

Masculinity in the black imagination: Politics of communication Race and manhood – edited by Ronald L.Jackson and Mark Hopson.


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