From The Ramparts

Junious Ricardo Stanton

MEE Productions Offers A New Video to Empower Black Males

MEE Productions a marketing, research and production company that focuses on ways to reach and positively impact urban youth has released a new video entitled Successfully Mastering the Journey for African American Male Youth. The video was recently screened at the Atlanta’s Black Man Film Festival to favorable reviews. MEE Productions founder and CEO Ivan Juzang was introduced to the film’s subject Dr. Joe White, a pioneering African centered psychologist, by Dr. Asa Hilliard who considers Dr. White his mentor in the fields of psychology and pedagogy . Dr. White is looked upon by many as a pioneer in the field of "Black Psychology". He is the author of several books including: The Psychology of Blacks An African-American Perspective, The Troubled Adolescent and Black Man Emerging. Currently Dr. White is Professor Emeritus of University of California Irvine and is considered one of the founding father’s of Black Psychology. From Asa Hilliard’s introduction, Ivan Juzang decided to produce a short film on Dr. White as he shared his insights on the best ways to empower African-American male youth and assist them navigating life in an often extremely hostile social and emotional environment. Dr. White espouses drawing on the historical strengths of the African-American community so black males develop effective coping skills necessary to thrive and succeed in an openly hostile environment. The video was taped at a conference on male violence at Temple University and features Dr. White dispensing information, wisdom and profundity in an earthy style all black folks can relate to. "I felt it is important for us to share Dr. White’s insights on the framework people need to consider when working with black males. The thing is, he talks about the challenges and he talks about the strengths that we need to cultivate in black men. The great thing about it is, it doesn’t say you have to do it this way or that way, it establishes an essential framework. Here are the challenges all black men are gonna face and here are some of the strengths that they need so that people who have different programs can incorporate these strengths into their model but use their model in the overall Dr. White framework." Explained Juzang.

The video is twenty six minutes long and packed full of information beneficial for the practical application of seven virtues and strengths all black men should master. Dr, White articulates and expounds upon the seven strengths Africans in America have demonstrated since being brought to this hemisphere, that must be modeled, cultivated and encouraged amongst all black boys. The seven strengths are: improvisation (spontaneous innovation and creativity on the fly), resilience (the ability to bounce back- to mend and get stronger in the broken places), a connectedness to others a sense of community and belonging, spirituality (soul power), emotional vitality emotionally well rounded and grounded, gallows humor (the ability to laugh at ourselves and our situation during the most trying times) and a healthy suspicion of white folks (don’t believe everything white folks say). Dr. White’s latest book Black Fathers An Invisible Presence in America is about the often unheralded positive contributions black fathers make to their children’s development. It is scheduled for release in December 2005. The video captures Dr. White’s sense of humor and his uncanny his ability to connect with the conference audience, capture their attention and have them hanging on his every word. The video offers excellent source material for parents, mentors and groups working with African-American males. Dr White is credited with being a major influence on his students and a role model and mentor for a whole cadre of Black Psychologists around the country. Successfully Mastering the Journey For African American Male Youth retails for $19.95 plus shipping and handling. For more information visit or call (215) 829-4920.