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Open Access Sticks and Stones: Racism as Experienced by Adolescents in New Brunswick Une violence insidieuse: le racisme tel que vécu par les adolescents au Nouveau-Brunswick

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Abstract:

The purpose of the study was to describe both the nature of racism as experienced by adolescent self-described victims in the province of New Brunswick, Canada, and their response to the perceived racist incidents. A qualitative methodology based on the constructivist paradigm was used. In-depth interviews were conducted with non-White adolescent victims of racism and with parents of victims. Although the study was initiated in response to an eruption of publicity about teenage racial violence, the findings indicate that racist incidents were not a new phenomenon for the participants. They described a low-key but long-term problem that had begun when they entered the public school system. Name-calling was by far the most common form of racism identified, and it played a part in most of the other incidents described; dismissed as harmless by authority figures, it appeared to have long-term consequences for its targets. The participants' response to racism was found to have 3 phases: splintered universe, spiralling resistance, and disengagement. The results suggest that nurses working in the field of school health should address issues of racism among children and adolescents.

French
L'objectif de la recherche était de décrire la nature du racisme tel que vécu par des adolescents affirmant être victimes de ségrégation dans la province du Nouveau-Brunswick, au Canada, ainsi que leur réaction face aux incidents de racisme perçu. Une méthodologie qualitative fondée sur un paradigme constructiviste a été utilisée dans le cadre de cette étude. Des entrevues en profondeur ont été menées auprès d'adolescents non blancs qui ont été victimes de racisme et auprès des parents de ces victimes. Bien que la recherche ait été initiée en réponse à une campagne publicitaire intensive portant sur la violence raciale chez les adolescents, les résultats indiquent que les incidents de racisme sont un phénomène connu des participants. Ces derniers décrivent un problème insidieux mais aussi persistant auquel ils ont dû faire face lorsqu'ils ont commencé à fréquenter l'école publique. Les injures constituent la forme de racisme la plus répandue et font partie de la plupart des incidents décrits. Même si les symboles d'autorité les qualifient d'inoffensives, les injures semblent produire des effets à long terme sur les personnes ciblées. Selon les résultats, les réactions des participants face au racisme comportent trois phases : l'éclatement de l'univers, la résistance en spirale et le désengagement. Les résultats révèlent que les infirmières æuvrant en milieu scolaire doivent traiter des questions ayant trait au racisme avec les enfants et les adolescents.

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: March 1, 2009

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