Black adolescent females have largely been neglected in the research literature on their avid reading. While Gibson (2010) explained that Black girls are often portrayed in the literature as struggling and even “remedial” readers, those Black adolescent females who are avid readers receive even less attention. The purpose of this study, then, was to investigate the voracious reading proclivities of this population in order to provide a balanced view of Black adolescent females’ reading lives. The findings of this phenomenological study indicate that these five participants go beyond loving reading; they crave it. The meaning of reading for these participants is caught up in their relationships with role models, preference for solitude while reading, and the desire for social interactions after having read texts. This study is significant because it provides a different perspective on the traditional literacy of Black adolescent females.


Black Females, Adolescents, Phenomenology, Avid Readers, Reading

Author Bio(s)

Jacqueline B. Koonce is in the Department of Bilingual and Literacy Studies at the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley. This manuscript is based on data from her doctoral dissertation while the author was a doctoral student with the Department of Teacher Education, at Michigan State University; 620 Farm Lane; East Lansing, Michigan 48824. Correspondence regarding this article can be addressed directly to: Jacqueline Koonce, Main 2.110; Department of Bilingual and Literacy Studies; One West University Boulevard; University of Texas Rio Grande Valley; Brownsville, Texas 78520; E-mail: jacqueline.koonce@utrgv.edu

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