ERIC Number: EJ1084094
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 24
"Blessed": Musical Talent, Smartness, & Figured Identities
Hoffman, Adria R.
Equity & Excellence in Education, v48 n4 p606-620 2015
The purpose of this study is to explore smartness and talent as social constructs. Drawing on Holland et al.'s (1998) figured identities, this article explores the figuring of abilities by elucidating the voices of African American high school chorus students. Critical Race Theory (CRT) helps to unpack normalized language and practices that comprise intelligence, talent, and identity construction. The student participants in this study contrasted high school experiences in which they constructed musical and academic identities, describing how smart or talented they were relative to significant others around them. Findings suggest that constructions of musical talent and smartness socially positioned students along race, gender, and class lines. Interpretations of talent and intelligence may impact the curricular options made available to students, their academic identity construction, musical identity construction, and inequitable school practices.
Descriptors: Talent, Intelligence, Ability, Race, Critical Theory, High School Students, Singing, African American Students, Music, Academic Ability, Racial Differences, Gender Differences, Social Class, Qualitative Research, Case Studies, Interviews, Music Activities, Assignments, Musical Composition, Musicians
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: High Schools; Secondary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A