Hip hop and hip hop politics is close to my heart and always on my mind. For me, hip hop is a tool for social change. The elements and aesthetics of hip hop influence the way I teach and learn, as well as how I go about building community with progressive and innovative artists and scholars. As a native of Long Beach, California, I have always had an affinity to the hypnotic beats of West Coast and Southern hip hop styles, but I love the beats and rhymes of artists all over the world, especially female artists like Toni Blackmon, Jean Grae, Erykah Badu, Sabreena Da Witch, Boss, MIA, Meshelle Ngedeocello, among many, many others. The artists I respect take important stances against different kinds of social oppression. They creatively interweave resistance into their work. I try to interweave hip hop politics into my work as a teacher, scholar, mother, and community organizer. I am going to upload my book cover which, I think, is a pretty good image of how I have analyzed the social world, including hip hop as a 30-something black woman professor who studies politics in GWSS.