Theses and Dissertations

Issuing Body

Mississippi State University


Xu, Xiaohe

Committee Member

Burdette, Amy

Committee Member


Date of Degree


Document Type

Graduate Thesis - Open Access

Degree Name

Master of Science


College of Arts and Sciences


Department of Sociology and Social Work


Results indicate that structural factors are highly predictive of paternal commitment and paternal involvement among low-income African American fathers, thus lending strong credence to the structural barriers perspective. Moreover, while findings also indicate that several cultural factors are associated with paternal involvement (e.g., attitudes toward single motherhood and low self-efficacy), they are at odds with the cultural deficiency perspective. These results have both theoretical and policy implications. With respect to fatherhood theory, findings derived from this research call for a much-needed theoretical integration in studying paternal commitment and paternal involvement among low-income African American fathers; that is, to synthesize and integrate a structurally sound theory with a culturally sensitive approach, such as the cultural resiliency perspective. This research also suggests that public policy-makers should be aware of the adaptive strategies that many low-income African American fathers employ in order to be actively involved with their children, especially those who are young.



paternal involvement||African American fathers||low-income