Date of Award
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Professor William Shaffir
This study, which is based on field research, examines the question of ethnic community formation among Blacks in Hamilton. It deals with both the factors, such as institutions or voluntary organizations, which facilitate community building and those, such as the absence of effective local Black leadership, which undermine that endeavor. Given the limited number and range of formal institutions or organizations in the local Black community, this study concentrates on the informal channels of interaction among local Blacks. The major informal channels identified and examined are as follows: (1) dinners and dances; (2) picnics; (3) the annual Cari-Can summer festival; (4) Martinsday celebrations; (5) Black History celebrations; and (6) house parties.
This study found that there are two primary reasons for the appeal of informal features of Black communal life; (1) they offer Blacks opportunities to be overtly Afro-centric and (2) unlike formal organizations, they do not demand long-term commitments. Another major finding of this study is that Black ethnic identity in Hamilton is significantly stronger than one would expect based on the institutional strength of the local Black community. This identity is more directly related to ideologies and events among Blacks in Toronto, the United States, and elsewhere than it is to local circumstances.
Etoroma, Efajemue Enenajor, "Blacks in Hamilton: An Analysis of Factors in Community Building" (1992). Open Access Dissertations and Theses. Paper 1119.