black doll test

The Clark Doll Test was created by Dr. Kenneth Clark and his wife, Marmie Clark. It focused on stereotypes and self perception in relation to race. Clark wanted to show that segregation in schools was misconstruing the mind of young African American children and causing them to internalise racism and view themselves as lesser. In the test, African American children ranging from 6-years-old to 9-years-old were shown two dolls - one was white and one was black. They were asked a number of questions such as:  Show me the doll that you like best or that you would like to play with. Show me the doll that is the ‘nice’ doll. Show me the doll that looks 'bad.’ Give me the doll that looks like a white child. Give me the doll that looks like a coloured child. Give me the doll that looks like a Negro child. Give me the doll that looks like you. The test showed that the children preferred to play with with white doll as opposed to the black doll. The children were then asked to colour in a human figure with the colour of their own skin - the majority chose a lighter shade. As well as this, the children gave the white doll positive attributes such as “good” and “pretty” while describing the black doll as “bad” and “ugly”. 44% of the children said that the white doll looked like them as opposed to the black doll. This test indicated that African American children, even as young as just 6-years-old, suffered internalised racism due to segregation. The findings paved the way for an increase in psychological research into areas of self-esteem and self-concept.


So I decided to play around with this wig, dress and new shoes and I ended up doing an attempt to look like a cute gothic doll with Gloomy the Bear~ So I wanted to share this here. I hope you guys like it~ :3

rad-and-broke-deactivated201410  asked:

My boyfriend is a student teacher for kids (3 - 5) with developmental issues, and he wants to do something for Black History Month. The other teachers think that it's pointless since they're so young and there are no black students in the class. Do you have any suggestions on what he could discuss that'd be easy for them to understand?

The misinformation about kids being “color-blind” and “not able to see race at their age” is beyond frustrating for me and many other POC who were painfully aware of our race at a young age due to racist microagressions from our peers. In fact, studies show that kids can recognize and discriminate against one another based on the color of their skin at as young as 6 months oldSo that’s the first piece, and yes, teaching kids about race at that age is important. 

I think one thing that could be interesting to spark discussion amongst children that young is to do an experiment similar to the Brown v. Board of Education, Kenneth and Mammie Clark doll experiment.

In case you don’t know about this experiment here is a short description via the wiki page linked above:

The doll experiment involved a child being presented with two dolls. Both of these dolls were completely identical except for the skin and hair color. One doll was white with yellow hair, while the other was brown with black hair. The child was then asked questions inquiring as to which one is the doll they would play with, which one is the nice doll, which one looks bad, which one has the nicer color, etc. The experiment showed a clear preference for the white doll among all children in the study.

[image description: a young black girl with braids in a pink sweater with two dolls (a black doll and a white doll) in front of her and she’s pointing to the white doll]

This study was duplicated recently and the results were tragically (but not surprisingly) largely the same. 

I think the reason this is important in an all white setting as well is that it shows that antiblackness, white supremacy and implicit racial bias are all already vividly alive and present at that age in their white world. Especially the comments about which doll is “good” vs. “bad” and “pretty” vs. “ugly” and exploring the whys behind them would spark very important discussions that can be framed easily for that age group. It also doesn’t even have to be something where the kids individually pick the dolls (parents might feel uncomfortable with their child being “picked out” as “racist”) but a class discussion where the two dolls are held up and answers and responses are generated collectively. 

Just some food for thought, that I think would be so much more helpful and productive than reciting the “I have a dream” speech and reinforcing false “colorblind” narratives about our “post-racial” society. It is so important that white people especially realize that white supremacy is a present and incredibly salient force in their lives, even in all white settings and even at an age as young as 3 (and below).

There are surely other ways to test implicit racial bias and spark discussions relevant to this age group, but I hope that was at least somewhat helpful.



Black Doll Test Done In Mexico