Publication Date


Document Type

Masters Thesis


School for Social Work


African American men-Socialization, Mothers and sons, African American mothers-Family relationships, African Americans-Communication, Racism, Resilience (Personality trait), Racial socialization, Communication, African American, Mother, Son


This study explored the long-term effects of racial socialization patterns from African American mothers to their sons to discover whether they are enhancing or impeding the wellbeing the African American males. While several distinct socialization types emerge throughout the literature with egalitarian, and barrier socialization messages predominating, the measures have focused primarily on the effects of racial socialization on academic performance. This qualitative study attempted to illuminate a gap in the literature: the long-term effects of mother to son racial socialization messages as evidenced by the limited research examining the later life experiences of adult African American men. The results of this study support the literature with the discovery of consistent examples of early racial socialization patterns from African American mothers to sons continuing to be a protective factor well into the middle stages of adulthood. These findings allow for the development of a more culturally sensitive and competent treatment modality for victims of racism, accessible through all stages of adulthood.




iii, 54 p. Thesis (M.S.W.)--Smith College School for Social Work, 2013. Includes bibliographical references (p. 42-47)