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Real Men Wear
by Jonathan Smalls, Ph.D

Real Men Wear PINK  by Jonathan T. Smalls Ph.D.
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The genesis of Real Men Wear PINK evolved at the end of a five-year estrangement from my brother Pink McCaskell Jr. After serving time at Mason County Jail in Michigan, Pink returned home with hopes of leaving his past behind to embark on uncharted territory. Pink's journey would begin with unconventional access to college. Ironically, two brothers'- "the thug" and "the scholar- paths crossed on a college campus. Though I was the scholar, he became my professor and unveiled the mysteries of machismo behavior in the context of racial, gender, and economic oppression. Machismo is the professor of Black men. He proliferates the luxuries of sex, aggression, power, deviance, and aloofness.

Real Men Wear PINK uses the creativity of storytelling to unveil how machismo manifests in four Black male collegians from diverse backgrounds- Avery Johnson, Jaleen Gonzalez, Julius Simba-Simbi, and Pink McCaskell Jr. At the crossroads, each is challenged with accepting their past and forging a promising future. The book uniquely captures the struggles of being Black, male, and a collegian by using parables rooted in theory and practice to reimagine Black males' purpose, integrity, nurture, and knowledge- PINK.

In The Press

"I opened this book hoping to be able to finish it in several weeks of intermittent reading but found myself unable to put it down. In “Real Men wear PINK”, Dr. Smalls covers a range of socioeconomic, historical, cultural, societal, educational, psychological, religious, and political strata to articulate the struggle African males face in the search for identity and the quest for “Purpose, Integrity, Nurture, and Knowledge (PINK)”. PINK serves as the weaponry required by African American males to overcome these socioeconomic, psychological, cultural, and systemic obstacles placed in his path. “Wearing pink” is a metaphor for shedding the guard of machismo - masculine customs, also a form of the psychological “false self” or mask - in order to be transparent, vulnerable, and unlock the true self."

Thomas C. Avant


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