The items,pictures and words I put in my shadow box represent me and the dominant narratives I encounter everyday. In my box I also put the counter narratives that I use to fight against the opinions/perceptions people have about me. I am a 13 year old Black male and I am 6,4. What I just said people have so many dominant narratives about. Most people look at me and immediately think of NBA star or NFL star, but I don’t want to have that be my future. I want to be a chef and one day have my own restaurant, but I have to work for It. One day I hope that I persevere through all of the assumptions and opinions people have about me and about young Black men.

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CC BY-SA 4.0 Jacob January Artist Statement by Jacob is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

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Youth Voices is an open publishing platform for youth. The site is organized by teachers with support from the National Writing Project. Opinions expressed by writers are their own.

CC BY-SA 4.0All work on Youth Voices is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License

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