Black America's Naming Practices

2725 Words Jan 25th, 2018 11 Pages
This is true of many cultures but it is especially important for cultures which have been historically and or systematically marginalized. Many of the naming practices are shared across minority and indigenous cultures. Ethnic naming is often intended to convey meaningful messages, invoke personal and group power and even provide blessings. Unfortunately the names are often used as a tool to further marginalization instead of one which will realize the goal of enhanced self-determination.
Rather than attempting to understand naming practices or the names themselves, people often mock, scorn and marginalize the person attached to the name. Jamelle Bouie, a writer from the Daily Beast, in an article titled, “Are Black Names ‘Weird,’ or Are You Just Racist?”, found what many black people have been well aware of: there is a double standard concerning the uniqueness of the Black American name versus unique White names. (Bouie) He, along with other writers and researchers found that “job applicants with ‘black-sounding’ names are more likely to be rejected, regardless of qualifications. ” This raises a serious question: how can people realize self-determination if they cannot move beyond, even, the interview stage? A possible answer is the adoption of a…
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