Term of Award

Fall 2013

Degree Name

Doctor of Education in Curriculum Studies (Ed.D.)

Document Type and Release Option

Dissertation (restricted to Georgia Southern)


Department of Curriculum, Foundations, and Reading

Committee Chair

Dr. John Weaver

Committee Member 1

Dr. Marlynn Griffin

Committee Member 2

Dr. Catherine Meeks


This study focuses on the narratives of three African American males as they navigate the public education system and their differing destinies. This study is for educators who are committed to improving their teaching practices and adjusting curriculum to best serve the children they teach. Narrative Inquiry is the foundation of this study. The stories are examined through the frameworks of Critical Race Theory, Othering, Possible Selves, and Significance of Place. In the field of Critical Race Theory, the works of Derrick Bell, Cornel West, Louis Gates, and Gloria Ladson-Billings are instrumental in developing a clear understanding of the theory. In the field of Othering, the stories shared by Greg Dimitriadis, Linda Smith, Beverly Tatum, Ron Suskind, and others gave examples of how people are Othered and the impact that can have on one’s life. Possible Selves Theory, a philosophy in its early years and widely researched by Hazel Markus, Daphna Oyserman, Paula Nurius, also framed the reflections of the young men’s stories that are shared. And finally, the lens of Significance of Place was applied to the narratives to analyze the importance of where one lives to his or her educational experiences.