Why is Hip-Hop Feminism so hard to find?

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I think the concept of hip-hop feminism is essential for changing the sexist, racist, and homophobic parts of the world we live in. As evidenced in the readings, the fact that women of color are both invisible and at high risk for various health/social ills (HIV/AIDS, poverty, eviction, disenfranchisement, etc.) they have the most to gain from feminism. Peoples defines feminism as, "a political movement and the mode of analysis aimed at addressing the social, political, and economic inequities that plague the lives of women and girls world wide" (Peoples, 33). Hip-hop, as a genre that appeals to a wide range of people but also especially women of color, becomes a strategic platform. If feminism is the message/the lens and hip-hop is the vehicle, then, to me, it is an incredibly important, powerful, and valuable combination.

Even though as a white female I don't think I am black feminist hip-hop artists' main demographic, I still love the motivations (solidarity, calling people out on racist, homophobic, sexist BS, women expressing themselves creatively, etc) behind the art. I especially love Salt'n Pepa and Queen Latifah for their ability to speak strongly and seemingly remain true to themselves. They can talk about real issues and still maintain their female (but not sexploited) essence.

B-girl Be seems to be the most concentrated place to find the specific combination of hip-hop and feminism. It is a weekend long celebration of all female things in hip-hop. My search for hip-hop feminism in the Twin Cities turned up disappointingly little. In terms of specific artists the best I could find was the Nancy Drew Crew. I found this to be a little problematic though because the only thing about them that is true to hip-hop's origins is that they rap. What is cool is that they identify specifically as queer-feminists. They see hip-hop as a great vehicle for getting people to think critically about important issues like the environment, sexuality, body image, etc. So, in terms of race and perhaps geographic location, they don't exactly fit the bill but in terms of growing the genre of feminist hip-hop they're doing great!

2 Comments

After reading your blog post, I noticed that we see and believe many of the same things about hip hop feminism and what it means in our world today. I too am a white female, but see the art as a strong movement for black females. The black females in hip hop feminism are there to make their voice stand out and make a voice for their tradition and who they are.
I too was also disappointed in the little to no hip hop feminism in the Twin Cities. I feel that there should be more and the movement needs to be made here too in the Cities to make hip hop feminism be known.

I totally agree with you. It was hard to find hip hop feminism in Twin cities. Actually, I have been here, Minnesota for just 1 year. Also, I don’t usually enjoy club cultures, or dancing. Therefore, it was pretty hard to find and think of hip hop feminism in here for me. But I know feminism is always around us in this society today with the variety of forms, such as song, poem, advertisement, etc. I also thought there should be more knowledge or movement of hip hop feminism in here Minnesota in order to make other people know about it. I heard there is a B-girl club in the campus, so that they can exchange their knowledge and experience of hip hop feminism. I think it will be a good experience to participate in their showcase once if we have time.

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This page contains a single entry by perka001 published on September 26, 2012 5:43 PM.

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