Peer relations and school resistance: Does oppositional culture apply to race or to gender?

Garvey F. Lundy, Glenn A. Firebaugh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

23 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Oppositional culture theory argues that members of involuntary minority groups tend to underachieve in high school for fear that they be accused of "acting white." The underlying assumption, then, is that academic success harms peer relationships for involuntary minorities more than it does for other groups. Prior tests based on survey data fail to support the theory. Using the first follow-up (high school sophomores) of the National Education Longitudinal Study (NELS), we examined race/ethnic and gender differences with respect to the two main components of oppositional culture theory: peer relations and school resistance. Like prior survey analyses, we found no support for the thesis that oppositional culture accounts for race/ethnic differences in school achievement. However, oppositional culture does appear to play a key role in explaining why male students tend to receive lower grades despite standardized test scores that equal or exceed the scores of female students. Based on a battery of measures in the NELS, we find that anti-studious attitudes and behaviors are more prevalent among males than females, and conclude that future researchers should be more sensitive to this gender aspect of school culture.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)233-245
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Negro Education
Volume74
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 1 2005

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gender
school
longitudinal study
minority
school culture
academic success
accused
female student
gender-specific factors
education
Group
anxiety
student

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Education
  • Anthropology

Cite this

Lundy, Garvey F. ; Firebaugh, Glenn A. / Peer relations and school resistance : Does oppositional culture apply to race or to gender?. In: Journal of Negro Education. 2005 ; Vol. 74, No. 3. pp. 233-245.
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Peer relations and school resistance : Does oppositional culture apply to race or to gender? / Lundy, Garvey F.; Firebaugh, Glenn A.

In: Journal of Negro Education, Vol. 74, No. 3, 01.06.2005, p. 233-245.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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