African Social Pragmatics


The following resources may be useful. If you have additional resources that are not listed here, feel free to share other resources on this site.

Research Tool(s)

The Primary Research Appraisal Tool (PRAT) was designed to facilitate a critical review of published articles.

DeJarnette, G., Hyter, Y. D., & Rivers, K. O. (2012). The Primary Research Appraisal Tool (PRAT). Unpublished document. Department of Communication Disorders, Southern Connecticut State University, New Haven, CT.

The PRAT (DeJarnette, Hyter & Rivers, 2012) is included in the following article as supplemental digital content.

Hyter, Y. D., Rivers, K. O., & DeJarnette, G. (2015). Pragmatic language of African American children and adolescents: A systematic synthesis of the literature. Topics in Language Disorders, 35(1), 8 – 45.    

Photo of a Child at the Library.

Book List

A list of books for children and/or adolescents that illustrate African American culture, which was compiled by Dr. Kenyatta O. Rivers for the National Black Association of Speech-Language-Hearing (NBASLH).

Selected books for children and/or adolescents that reveal and celebrate the diversity within the African American culture include, but are not limited to, the following ones:

  1. From Miss Ida’s Porch by Sandra Belton (Four Winds, 1993)

  2. A Caribbean Dozen: Poems from Caribbean Poets, edited by John Agard and Grace Nichols (Candlewick Press, 1994)

  3. Meet Danitra Brown by Nikki Grimes (Lothrop, 1994)

  4. The Sunday Outing by Gloria Jean Pinkney (Dial, 1994)

  5. Alvin Ailey by Andrea Davis Pinkney (Hyperion, 1993)

  6. Christmas in the Big House, Christmas in the Quarters by Patricia C. McKissack and Fredrick L. McKissack (Scholastic, 1994)

  7. Pink and Say by Patricia Polacco (Putnam, 1994)

  8. Lift Ev’ry Voice and Sing by James Weldon Johnson (Scholastic, 1995)

  9. The Last Tales of Uncle Remus by Julius Lester (Dial, 1994)

  10. The Glory Field by Walter Dean Myers (Scholastic, 1994)

  11. Brown Girl Dreaming (Newbery Honor Book) by Jacqueline Woodson (Deckle Edge, 2014)

  12. The Watsons Go to Birmingham–1963 by Christopher Paul Curtis (Mass Market Paperback, 2000)

  13. Bud, Not Buddy by Christopher Paul Curtis (Mass Market Paperback, 2004)

  14. Chains (The Seeds of America Triology) by Laurie Halse Anderson (Atheneum Book for Young Readers, 2010)

  15. One Crazy Summer by Rita Williams-Garcia (Amistad, 2011)

  16. Those Shoes by Maribeth Boelts (Candlewick, 2009)

  17. Amos Fortune, Free Man by Elizabeth Yates (Puffin Books, 1989)

  18. We Beat the Street: How a Friendship by Sharon M. Draper (Puffin Books, 2006)

  19. Shortcut by Donald Crews (Greenwillow Books, 1996)

  20. Peter’s Chair by Ezra Jack Keats (Puffin Books, 1998)

  21. Bronx Masquerade by Nikki Grimes (Speak, 2003)

  22. Who Was Jesse Owens? by James Buckley (Grosset & Dunlap, 2015)

  23. I Love My Hair by Natasha Tarpley (Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, 2001)

  24. Firebird by Misty Copeland (G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers, 2014)

  25. Full, Full, Full of Love by Trish Cooke (Candlewick, 2008)

  26. Brown Girl Dreaming by Jacqueline Woodson (Nancy Paulsen Books, 2014)

  27. Tears of a Tiger by Sharon M. Draper (Simon Pulse, 1996)

  28. Last Stop on Market Street by Matt De La Pena (G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers, 2015)

  29. The Skin I’m In by Sharon Flake (Hyperion Book CH, 2007)

  30. Forge by Laurie Halse Anderson (Atheneum Books for Young Readers, 2012)

  31. I am Martin Luther King, Jr. by Brad Meltzer (Dial Books, 2016)

  32. I’m a Pretty Little Black Girl! by Betty K. Bynum (Dreamtitle Publishing, 2013)

  33. I am Rosa Parks by Brad Meltzer (Dial Books, 2014)

  34. President of the Whole Fifth Grade by Sherri Winston (Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, 2012)

  35. Who was Martin Luther King, Jr.? by Bonnie Bader (Grosset & Dunlap, 2007)

  36. Lola at the Library by Anna McQuinn (Charlesbridge, 2006)

  37. Who was Harriet Tubman? by Bonnie Bader (Grosset & Dunlap, 2002)

  38. Bigmama’s by Donald Crews (Greenwillow Books, 1998)

  39. Girl of Mine by Jabari Asim (LB Kids, 2010)

  40. Every Little Thing by Cedella Marley (Chronicle Books, 2012)

  41. Mrs. Katz and Tush by Patricia Polacco (Dragonfly Books, 1994)

  42. He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands by Sam Sneed (Dial Books, 2005)

  43. STAT: Standing Tall and Talented #1 by Amar’e Stoudemire (Scholastic Press, 2012)

  44. Whose Knees Are These? by Jabari Asim (LB Kids, 2006)

  45. One Love by Cedella Marley (Chronicle Books, 2011)

  46. Julian’s Glorious Summer by Ann Cameron (Random House Books for Young Readers, 1987)

  47. The Mighty Miss Malone by Christopher Paul Curtis (Yearling, 2013)

  48. We Are the Ship: The Story of the Negro League Baseball by Kadir Nelson (Jump at the Sun, 2008)

  49. Bring the Rain to Kapiti Plain by Verna Aardema (Puffin Books, 1992)

  50. Freedom Summer by Deborah Wiles (Aladdin, 2005)

  51. Lola Read to Leo by Anna McQuinn (Charlesbridge, 2012)

  52. Baby Dance by Ann Taylor (Harper Festivel, 1998)

  53. Keena Ford and the Field Trip Mix-Up by Melissa Thomson (Puffin Books, 2010)

  54. The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats (Puffin Books, 1976)

  55. I Like Myself! by Karen Beaumont (HMH Books for Young Readers, 2004)

  56. Please, Baby, Please by Spike Lee (Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, 2006)

  57. Mufaro’s Beautiful Daughters: An African Tale by John Steptoe (Amistand, 1987)

  58. Henry’s Freedom Box: A True Story from the Underground Railroad by Ellen Levine (Scholastic Press, 2007)

  59. Of Thee I Sing: A Letter to My Daughters by Barack Obama (Knopf Books, 2010)

  60. A Chair for My Mother by Vera B. Williams (Greenwillow Books, 2007)

  61. Why Mosquitoes Buzz in People’s Ears by Verna Aardema (Puffin Books, 1992)

  62. Come On, Rain! by Anna McQuinn (Charlesbridge, 2006)

  63. Chicken Sunday by Patricia Polacco (Puffin Books, 1998)

  64. I Can Do It Too! by Karen Baicker (Chronicle Books, 2003)

  65. Goin’ Someplace Special by Patricia C. McKissack (Atheneum Books for Young Children, 2001)

  66. Jazz Baby by Lisa Wheeler (HMH Books for Young Readers, 2007)

  67. Welcome Precious by Nikki Grimes (Orchard Books, 2006)

  68. Honey Baby Sugar Child by Alice Faye Duncan (Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, 2005)

  69. Peekaboo Morning by Rachel Isadora (G. P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers, 2008)

  70. Shanna’s Teacher Show by Jean Marzollo (Jump at the Sun, 2002)

Clinical Tools

Assessment of Pragmatic Language and Social Communication (APLSC, Hyter & Applegate, 2012) is an assessment battery for children between the ages of 3 and 7 years old. We are currently collecting data on this assessment battery in the U. S., Greece (in collaboration with Dr. Ioannis Vogindroukas and Euripedes Chelas and members of the Institute for Research and Education in Speech Therapy [IEEL]), and in Brazil (in collaboration with Dr. Fernanda Dreux Fernandes).

Hyter, Y. D., & Applegate, E. B. (2012). Assessment of pragmatic language and social communication. Unpublished research version. Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, MI.

Vogindroukas, I., Chelas, E., Hyter, Y. D., Kivrakidou, E., Kaloudi, V., & Paparizos, K. (2016). Assessment of Pragmatic Language and Social Communication – Greek (APLSC-GR). Unpublished research version. Institute for Research and Education in Speech Therapy (IEEL), Thessaloniki, Greece.

Publications of Interest

This list includes publications (bib references) of others doing similar work in the US and around the world. 

Champion, T. (1998). “Tell me somethin’ good”: A description of narrative structures among African American children. Linguistics and Education, 9(3), 251 – 286.

Curenton, S. M. (2004). Association between narratives and theory of mind for low-income preschoolers. Early Education and Development, 15(2), 121 – 146.

Horton-Ikard, R. (2009). Cohesive adequacy in the narrative samples of school-age children who use African American English. Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools, 40, 393 – 402.

Renn, J. & Terry, J. M. (2009). Operationalizing style: Quantifying the use of style shift in the speech of African American adolescents. American Speech, 84(4), 367 – 390.

Stockman, I. J. (2010). A review of developmental and applied language research on African American children: From a deficit to difference perspective on dialect differences. Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools, 41, 23 – 38.

Wyatt, T. A. (1995). Language development in African American English child speech. Linguistics and Education, 7, 7 – 22.