Between loud girls and finer womanhood: analyzing Black girls' experiences in a social club

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University of Alabama Libraries

This descriptive case study examines how participants in LADY, a social club for adolescent Black girls in the southeast, learn from their mothers and club advisors about Black womanhood. Findings revealed that Black girls in LADY were taught aspects of finer womanhood that informed their ideas about Black womanhood in three significant ways, specifically through finer womanhood, surveillance, and creating an "us" and "them" dichotomy. This study illustrated how advisors trained participants for finer womanhood through club activities and workshops. In addition to club advisors, mothers monitored girls' interactions in an effort to guide them into Black womanhood. Also, this study highlighted the "us" and "them" dichotomy that LADY had through their exclusionary membership criteria. This empirical research has implications for both Girls' Studies and Black Feminist Theory (BFT). It expands Girls' Studies by including scholarship about Black girls' lived experiences. It contributes to BFT by showcasing how age is a category of difference that needs to be incorporated into BFT in order to study Black girls' lives. It also has implications for similar social clubs by highlighting adults' and girls' complex and multifaceted relationships that influence girls' preparation for Black womanhood.

Electronic Thesis or Dissertation
Education, Gender studies