College Students' Storytelling of Ethnicity-Related Events in the Academic Domain

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8 Scopus citations


The purpose of the present study was to examine storytelling of ethnicity-related events among college-going, emerging adults. A total of 280 ethnically diverse participants recounted a memory about a time in which they told a previously reported, ethnicity-related story to others. Analysis centered on the function of the telling and on to whom the story was told. The findings indicated that stories were most often told to share experiences with others, followed by for emotion regulation and validation, and that friends were the most frequent audience. The pattern of story content, telling function, and audience suggests that stories are differentially channeled to various audiences for different purposes. Furthermore, 40% of all stories had never been told to others, suggesting continued barriers in the ability to talk to others about ethnicity-related experiences in the United States.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)203-230
Number of pages28
JournalJournal of Adolescent Research
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 2012

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The author disclosed receipt of the following financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article: Data collection was partially supported by a grant from the Spencer Foundation to Margarita Azmitia.


  • college
  • ethnicity
  • memories
  • narratives
  • storytelling


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