Theses and Dissertations

Issuing Body

Mississippi State University


Hagerman, Margaret A.

Committee Member

Allison, Rachel

Committee Member

King, Sanna

Date of Degree


Document Type

Graduate Thesis - Open Access



Degree Name

Master of Science (M.S.)


College of Arts and Sciences


Department of Sociology


This qualitative study explores the self-identification of young Black Surinamese Dutch women in the racialized context of Dutch society, how family and school contribute to identity formation, and how identity shapes the everyday lives of young women of color in predominantly white institutions in the Netherlands. Eight online in-depth interviews were conducted with Black Surinamese Dutch college women in the Netherlands about how they understand their identities, how they perceive the process of learning about their identities, and how their identities shape their everyday experiences in Dutch society. Findings illustrate the influence of family in shaping ideas about identity, the complexity of these women’s multiple layered identities, and their unique insider/outsider position in navigating everyday life in the Netherlands. This study illustrates empirically and theoretically the importance of using intersectional approaches when studying identity formation and contributes to ongoing scholarly work on racism and racial identity in Dutch society.