The New Black Masculinities Blog!

“I tell Black male’s hidden stories, and separate them from the stories others impose on them.” – Dr. T. Hasan Johnson

Dr. T. Hasan Johnson of CSU Fresno’s Africana Studies Program created the concept of Black Masculinism to highlight the need and value of progressive Black Masculinities in the Black community. Although they are all around, many overlook progressive Black men and focus only on problematic expressions of Black masculinity.

In response, Dr. Johnson created the notion of Black Masculinism: An approach to reflecting on, evaluating, and examining a progressive form of Black masculinity that acknowledges Black male life experiences as both “raced” and “gendered” in Western societies. Black male life experiences are therefore distinct, and often illustrate the complex relationship between Black males, social expectation, and oppression. It posits that Black male issues are often overlooked and “de-gendered,” while ignoring Black males who have demonstrated the capacity of Black men to move passed stereotypes and be strong, critical, outspoken, thoughtful, loving, and supportive of practices that improve the quality of life in the Black community. 

As a research tool, Black Masculinism [BM]: doesn’t presuppose or assume men’s innocence (or benevolent humanity) in any given situation, but does seek to outline and highlight men’s experiential narratives, ultimately highlighting men’s humanity–whether inspirational or problematic.

This site is a mixture of reflections, current events, popular culture observations, and meditations on progressive Black masculinities. Also, every spring, students in my Fresno State course AFRS 130T: The Black Male Experience post their Black Elder Projects, exhibiting a wide variety of examples of the myriad ways that Black men exemplify progressive masculinities that often go unrecognized in relation to their representations in popular media. This site was created in order to help people imagine Black masculinities in a less restrictive, more humane fashion.

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One thought on “The New Black Masculinities Blog!

  1. “It becomes more necessary to see the truth as it is, if you realize that the only vehicle for change are those people who have lost theor personality. The first step therefore is to make the black man come to himself; to pump back life into his empty shell; to infuse him with pride and dignity, to remond him of his complicity in the crime of allowing himself to be misused and therefore letting evil reign supreme in the country of his birth.”-Steven Biko

    Doesn’t it always start with self? Good, bad or indifferent it starts with one’s self. it’s analagous to that street mindset-“you in or out?” This really means are you personally committed to and vested in the cause. The black man’s difficulty is that it no longer knows what to be committed to or vested in. Therefore, the black man cannot recognize the loss of self and self-idenifty even as to the basics of gender, which is why I refer to the black man as “it.” The modern black man is the Japanese Ronin. A once proud Shogun that has lost his master, his purpose, his place and his self. Except, the black man’s master is himself. Biko is absolutely right. it starts with the individual. But how do we get a person to be introspective, and achieve a level of self-awareness that they can overcome, they can conquer fear, they can admit weakness, face defeat, acknowledge failure, and open to love, to friendship, vulnerability, truth, hope, letting go, being in the moment, asking, giving up control, pouring out, being free and reborn. Dr. Johnson- the black man’s path to redemption, re-discovery of self starts with three little words he must say, “it is me” It is me who must love, it is me who must change, it is me who is at fault, it is me who must open, rise, love, persevere and transform.

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