October 2012 Archives

Hip Hop Feminism in the Twin Cities

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Prior to this assignment, I had never associated hip hop and feminism with one another. I had thought of hip hop as a genre of music of which a demographic of young tricksters are attracted, and feminism as a political movement in which the fight for equality of women and men strives. It never crossed my mind that the two could possibly coincide. "Davis's words suggest that African-American women writing between the worlds of hip-hop and feminism and within the points of their convergence recognize that young black men and women need forums and other spaces in which to have crucial conversations between and among themselves," (Peoples 31). Also, Peoples points out that hip hop feminism assumes a larger position than simply music. "Shifting the 'feminist' approach to hip hop has taken the current form of a sociopolitical agenda of uplift aimed at self-empowerment for women and girls through political education based on feminist modes of analysis," (Peoples 28). Now that this light of hip hop feminism has been exposed, it is much more clear to me how feminism takes its toll in hip hop.
I have been living in the Twin Cities for a short period of time, so I have not seen too many forms of feminism correlating with the Twin Cities. Queen Latifah and Missy Elliot are paradgims for hip hop feminism, but I would not directly associate them with the Minneapolis-St. Paul area. However, my friend introduced me to Dessa, a local female artist who is a part of Doomtree, about a year ago and I have fallen in love with her music. Not only is she a talented musician, she carries herself with such strength, it takes the audience aback. Here's an excerpt from one of her songs:
But I've learned how to paint my face,
How to earn my keep
How to clean my kill.
Some nights i still cant sleep,
The past rolls back, I can see us still.
You've learned how to hold your own,
How to stack your stones,
But the history's thick.
Children arent as simple,
As we'd like to think.

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