South Carolina Association for Middle Level Education Journal


Black Language has historically been marginalized as a broken form of Standard English forcing the speakers of this language to conform and devalue their native tongue. This impact has led to a negative stigma on Black Language and forced Black people to relinquish their cultural literacies. This study reflects on understanding why Black Language must be recognized as a legitimate language. It also illustrates why Black Language should be welcomed into the classroom as it provides a pathway to self-actualization affording Black students the opportunity to self-define and self-validate their existence. Special emphasis is placed on how language impacts adolescent identity development.