Class Year


Document Type

Student Research Paper

Date of Creation

Fall 2020

Department 1



A majority of the research on the accusation of acting white focuses on whether it is responsible for creating the wide achievement gap between white and Black people in America (Tyson, Darity, and Castellino 2005). However, there is little research that has looked into the potentially damaging effects that this accusation can have on the selves and identities of Black students. Through the analysis of classical and contemporary sociological theories and studies, it is determined that African Americans’ selves and identities are negatively impacted when they are accused of “acting white.” The suggested impacts are negative social reflection and the necessity to manage conflicting identities. Additionally, the creation of double consciousnesses, a shift in salience hierarchy, and impression management difficulties can also result.


Written for SOC 315: Theories of Self

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Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License