Send to

Choose Destination
J Gen Intern Med. 2012 Feb;27(2):153-9. doi: 10.1007/s11606-011-1836-0. Epub 2011 Sep 12.

Through our eyes: exploring African-American men's perspective on factors affecting transition to manhood.

Author information

American Heart Association/Pharmaceutical Roundtable-Spina Outcomes Research, Center at UCLA, 710 Westwood Plaza, C109 RNRC, Los Angeles, CA, USA.



Premature mortality and disparities in morbidity observed in African-American men may be associated with factors in their social, economic, and built environments that may be especially influential during the transition to adulthood.


To have young, African-American men from Los Angeles County identify and prioritize factors associated with their transition to manhood using photovoice methodology and pile-sorting exercises.


Qualitative study using community-based participatory research (CBPR) and photovoice


Twelve African-American men, ages 16-26 years, from Los Angeles County, California.


We used CBPR principles to form a community advisory board (CAB) whose members defined goals for the partnered project, developed the protocols, and participated in data collection and analysis. Participants were given digital cameras to take 50-300 photographs over three months. Pile-sorting techniques were used to facilitate participants' identification and discussion of the themes in their photos and selected photos of the group. Pile-sorts of group photographs were analyzed using multidimensional scaling and hierarchical cluster analysis to systematically compare participants' themes and identify patterns of associations between sorted photographs. Sub-themes and related quotes were also elicited from the pile-sorting transcripts. The CAB and several study participants met periodically to develop dissemination strategies and design interventions informed by study findings.


Four dominant themes emerged during analysis: 1) Struggles face during the transition to manhood, 2) Sources of social support, 3) Role of sports, and 4) Views on Los Angeles lifestyle. The project led to the formation of a young men's group and community events featuring participants.


CBPR and photovoice are effective methods to engage young, African-American men to identify and discuss factors affecting their transition to manhood, contextualize research findings, and participate in intervention development.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Springer Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center