The Use of Poetic Transcription to Discuss Police Brutality in the U.S.




Guajardo, Kristen Brianna

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The purpose of this study is to explore the feelings and experiences that African American males have about police brutality to further one’s understanding toward the Black Lives Matter Movement. For this study, 8 anonymous African American male students who attend Texas State University were asked to volunteer in 25-minute in-depth interview which consisted of 8 questions. Upon finishing the interviews, an art-based research method known as poetic transcription was used to shed light on the feelings and experiences these African Americans had toward police brutality. Art based researchers see poetry as a means of doing, showing, and telling all in one. Poetry not only helps in sharing one’s story, but it also captures and emphasizes the most important points and emotions that can help educate others. Therefore, this study utilized the use of poetic transcription to retell the stories of these African American males who were interviewed using only their words anonymously. In this study, the researcher then utilized the use of poetic transcription by rearranging the words recorded during the interviews taking into consideration what parts of the interviews were the most influential on their own understanding. It was through this process of poetic transcription that three major themes emerged. (1) the influence of poetry to enable understanding; (2) The angst and stigma attached to being an African American; (3) The devastating reality of being an African American; Overall, the transcribed poems of this study opens the possibility for other future art-based research methods to assist in other’s understanding on different perspectives enabling them to empathize with various cultures and ethnicities.



police brutality, poetic inquiry, poetic transcription, BLM, Black Lives Matter, ABR, art based research, injustice in the U.S., poetry, racism, discrimination, Honors College


Guajardo, K. B. (2019). The use of poetic transcription to discuss police brutality in the U.S. (Unpublished thesis). Texas State University, San Marcos, Texas.


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