The High Plains Society
Applied Anthropology

An Exploratory Study of Young African-American Fathers in Lincoln, Nebraska The Gottfried and Martha Lang Student Prize Paper

Christina J. Dorsey

Both African-American fathers and teen fathers are socially stigmatized groups. Negative stereotypes are especially problematic for men in the intersection of these two categories. Misunderstandings of young Black fathers may lead to a lack of appropriate community services, which research indicates have the potential to mitigate the negative outcomes common to both adolescent fathers and their children. However, local parenting programs often neglect teen fathers. Interviews with a local sample of four young African-American fathers reveal that they have a desire to create and maintain ties with their children, but barriers often stand in the way of their intentions. Needs expressed by these fathers include strategies for communicating with the mothers of their children, connections to economic and educational resources, and opportunities for bonding with their children.

High Plains Applied Anthropologist No. 2, Vol. 24, Fall, 2004 pp 114-128

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