Date of Award

1-26-2016

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

M.A.

Department

Psychology

First Advisor

Towson, Shelagh

Keywords

African-American, Black, Case Study, Ferguson, Police, Qualitative

Rights

CC BY-NC-ND 4.0

Abstract

The Ferguson Uprising was ignited by the August 2014 police killing of a Black teen in a St. Louis, Missouri suburb. In order to understand the Uprising, a community case study method is utilized which combines an analysis of the historical, political and economic context of Ferguson and North St. Louis County with an interpretive phenomenological analysis of interviews with 10 Ferguson area residents who participated in the Uprising. The study began by asking why such a militant uprising occurred in Ferguson. Through a reflexive process the study expanded to ask questions about the meanings community members held of the uprising and life in its aftermath. A series of meta-narratives tell the collective story of the participants. Through the combination of methods, a story emerges which demonstrates the racism, greed, and violence of the local bourgeois power elite and the stubborn resistance of ordinary people to this corrupting power.

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