The Impact of Personal Identity and Racial Identity on Drug Attitudes and Use among African American Children

Tiffany G. Townsend, Faye Z. Belgrave

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

41 Scopus citations


The purpose of this study was to empirically test for a positive relationship between the two components of the self-system and to determine the relative contribution of each component to drug use and drug attitudes in a sample of African American youth. One hundred and four (53 males, 51 females) African American fourth-grade students attending an inner-city public school served as study participants. The Children–s Black Identity Scale, the Piers-Harris Self-Concept Scale, a Drug Use measure, and the Attitude Toward Drug Test were administered prior to the students– participation in a substance abuse prevention program. Correlation and regression analyses were computed. Personal identity and racial identity were both significant predictors of drug attitudes. In addition, results revealed a significant positive relationship between personal identity and racial identity. Implications for substance abuse prevention efforts among African American children were discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)421-436
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Black Psychology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2000
Externally publishedYes


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anthropology
  • Applied Psychology

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