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PublicationSituated Identities of Young, African American Fathers in Low-Income Urban Settings(2003-07-01) Gadsden, Vivian; Wortham, Stanton; Turner, Herbert MYoung, low-income, African American fathers have been at the center of research, practice, and policy on families over the past decade. This article uses a "voicing" analytic technique to examine identities among young, low-income, African American fathers living in an urban setting; the intersections of these identities; and the fathers' perceptions of the influences of familial, peer, and legal systems as barriers and resources in their development as fathers and the sustainability of their fathering roles. The primary questions addressed urban fathers' representations of their transition to fatherhood, intergenerational relationships, transformative events, and visions of a possible self. Results from a survey, focus groups, and interviews suggest that the fathers seek to reinvent themselves and reconstruct their identities by separating from street life, redefine home as a place of stability, and challenge the practices of social and legal systems that appear to work against their responsible fathering. PublicationUrban Fathers Positioning Themselves through Narrative: An Approach to Narrative Self-Construction(2006-01-01) Wortham, Stanton; Gadsden, VivianMany have argued that narrators can partly construct themselves when they tell autobiographical stories. For this reason, autobiographical narrative has been proposed as a therapeutic tool (Anderson 1997; Cohler 1988; White and Epston 1990), as a means to critique unjust social orders (Personal Narratives Group 1989; Rosenwald and Ochberg 1992; Zuss 1997), and as an educational tool (Cohen 1996; Witherell and Noddings 1991). This body of work makes at least two important points. First, the 'self' is not an unchanging entity beyond the reach of everyday human action, but is something that can under some circumstances be changed with effort. Second, changing the self can happen through the social practice of narration, not just through the activity of an isolated individual. PublicationComplexities in "Similarity" in Research Interviewing: A Case of Interviewing Urban Fathers(2004-01-01) Wortham, Stanton; Gadsden, VivianIn this article we show how, whether the goal is reflecting or creating reality, research interviewers must pay closer attention to the particular trajectories of the interactional events in which they collect their data. We focus on two guidelines that research interviewers often use - the injunction to maximize similarities of social identity between interviewer and interviewee, and the injunction to share personal stories as a means of building rapport - and we show how following the same guideline in the same way can yield dramatically different results from one interview to the next. Data is drawn from research interviews conducted by young African American men with young African American men who have become fathers as teenagers. The empirical analysis shows that bids for similarity of identity within the research interviews are sometimes accepted and sometimes parried, depending on the particulars of the interactional event, thus illustrating the complexity of "similarity" of identity in research interviews.