In Lessons Learned from Double-Dutch, educational researcher, Corrie L. Theriault (2015) draws from Ladson-Billings 1994 “culturally relevant pedagogy” (CRP) (p. 186, para 1). Theriault (2015) compares playing double-dutch, a popular jump rope game for black girls to the way she maneuvers through the academy. The author also pulls from Crenshaw’s intersectionality theory to describe CRP as a point of interests for black feminist researchers and their black female subjects. Theriault’s (2015) theory and method directly builds on my study which pulls from black feminist scholars.
My research analyzes the way in which black women heal, survive, and tend to themselves through a digital 21st century framework. Without drawing from former black feminists and black women’s wellness practices, the context of social media, blogging, and digital spaces would not have a foundation. Theriault’s (2015) method places herself as a subject within her research. A part of Black women’s survival tactics includes the interpersonal relationships with one another. One cannot study individual black women without including the way black women (and girls) find community amongst one another.
Theriault (2015) illustrates the movement of playing double-dutch and the way it relates to a black girl’s coordination. She circles this internal guidance system to black feminist educational researchers who must reconcile their black womanhood with their academic side. When referring to black girls taking the risk to jumping into a double-dutch rope, she writes, “my sister scholars and I continue this exercise everyday” (p. 184, para 2).
From Theriault’s (2015) perspective, black female scholars, even when studying black women must decide between removing themselves from the research even when their direct relation to their subject’s experience is beneficial to the research. Theriault (2015) claim makes two main arguments. One, black female scholars are denied the right to incorporate themselves with non-traditional research methods to effectively study black females.
The second argument is, while denying the right to use tools and methods for and by black women to study black women. Theriault is discouraged from being her full self as a black woman who relates to the research and a black female scholar who’s studying the research.
In the name of research, Theriault is tasked with the impossible of removing herself from the research methods. It’s important to adapt research methodologies relevant to the subjects the same way it’s important to consider the type of research to conduct that’s relevant to the research. This is no different for studying black women. It’s impossible to study black women without considering the way in which black females build and maintain relationships. The behavior, decisions, and individuality of black females are rooted in black sisterhood. Without the author inserting herself into her research methodology to interact with her black female subjects, her research results may not be as substantial.
In addition to the practical reason for incorporating, “sayings, proverbs, rituals, and songs from research respondents” (p. 186, para 3) as a part of the “missing literature that has been muted by Euro-Western methodologies” (p. 186, para 3). It’s necessary for black female scholars to fizzle out white male dominance through resistant research practices of black female activism. Its archiving our culture, language, and way of being by publicizing the way we do things. Without increasing the voices of my own blood sisters, this study would be insufficient. The second part of this study includes a sister circle and the first one on one interview with my blood sisters.
What Data: My Black Feminist Auto Ethnography
begins with a digital invitation to a sister circle between my 4 sisters who’ve sustained ourselves as sisters but also as content creators and consumers of black female blog content. I’m sharing the sister circle of my 4 sisters who are 24-36 who consume content from black feminist bloggers. My sisters' sexual identity is straight. We are mothers, daughters, aunties, wives, girlfriends, students, Lyft drivers, photographers, designers, stylist, jewelry designers, and creators. We’re originally from New York City, born and raised. The gathering will take 1½ hours to complete.
6. Do black female bloggers use blogging to intentionally heal and/or resist white supremacy? If so, how?
7. Do black females consume blog content to intentionally heal and/or resist white supremacy? If so, why?
8. Who are your favorite black female bloggers?
9. What's the difference between blogging and social media?
10. What does branding mean to you?
Explanation: I’m a black female blogger and consumer of blogs. I intentionally sought out digital scrapbooking to counter negative, toxic, and stereotypical narratives about black women. I use blogging to resist white supremacy. In addition to being a black female blogger, my sisters and I share and consume content in direct messages, group chats, on our phone conferences and in person. They would except a research study like this from me and feel more comfortable sharing and discussing their view point and consumption of black female blog content. My sisters trust me.