October 2012 Archives

My favorite non U.S. hip hop artist! - Tinie Tempa

| 1 Comment

When I was asked to think of my favorite non U.S. hip hop artist Tinie Tempa automatically came to mind. Over the years listening to him, I have found his songs to be incredibly entertaining and original. As an artist he has been very succesful and collaborates with other artist who top the hip hop charts. Tinie Tempa is an english rapper that came to the United States after his career took off across seas.

turf dancing

| No Comments

Hip Hop Feminism in the Twin Cities

| No Comments

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.

Hip Hop Feminism in the Twin Cities

| No Comments

Having never been to a hip-hop concert (or any concert, for that matter), and given the fact that I don't regularly listen to hip-hop, I have very little experience with hip-hop in the Twin Cities. I have heard of some popular local artists, such as Atmosphere and Brother Ali, but from what I have heard of them they probably can not be considered hip-hop. So, I decided to look for some examples of female hip-hop artists in the Twin Cities.

Auburn is a hip-hop artist from Minneapolis who gained a small amount of notoriety in 2007 with the release of her album Same Giirl. She has released several singles since then, one of which has charted on the U.S. Hot 100, but has not released any additional albums.

Dessa is a rapper from Minneapolis, and is the only female member of the Hip-Hop group Doomtree, which is based in Minneapolis. Dessa has released several albums with Doomtree, along with Two solo albums.

The most interesting find on my search for female hip-hop artists in the Twin Cities was Desdamona. Desdamona won the award for best spoken word artist in Minnesota five years in a row, and is considered one of the best female hip-hop artists in the Midwest. She has been a guest in Brother Ali's music, and has rapped about her frustration with hip-hop being dominated by men.

Hip-hop feminism clearly has a long way to go in the Twin Cities, but it is there for anyone who is looking for it, and hopefully it will become more prominent in the years to come.

Strange bedfellows

| No Comments

Durham argues that "Hip-hop gains its popularity from its oppositionality and from its complicity in reproducing dominant representations of black womanhood" (Durham 2007, 305). This assertion is further extended by Peoples who observes that rap music's current prevalence in American culture is resultant of its willingness to perpetuate (and magnify) existing stereotypes and myths of blackness (Peoples 2008, 24). In order to gain the kind of widespread acceptance that would make feminist hip-hop a valuable platform for resisting and transforming sexist, racist, and misogynist notions of (black) womanhood, the form would have to first obtain a license to operate in the white public space that is our society. This license, according to Durham and Peoples, is granted only if a willingness to conform to and advance the same mythologies and fantasies that feminist hip-hop endeavors to counter, exists. An acceptance to operate in these boundaries would render feminist hip-hop, as a means of "employing humanizing discourses," hopelessly compromised.

I admit that the premise of my argument - that feminist hip-hop has to gain widespread acceptance/popularity in order to have any sort of meaningful impact - could be flawed. But if this form is to attempt to effect change in the lives of women and girls outside the academy, how else is this to be accomplished?View image

Who are we to say?

| 2 Comments

Hip hop feminism is a difficult topic to approach because before beginning to explore the idea as a whole, one must consider what feminism in and of itself means to us:

Personally I am in no position to judge what is or is not feminism, because to me that is going against feminism. My opinion on the matter is rooted in the idea that feminism is the movement that should empower women to do whatever they want. That's pretty much it--I mean, feminism began because women were, for one reason or another, not allowed to simply do what they want. With this reasoning, I am able to appreciate everything that women do through feminist eyes, whether I agree with it or not.

Hip Hop Feminism

| No Comments

Through out my childhood I heard about Miss Lauryn Hill and the fuggees from my older cousins. I recognized her face from her role as 'Rita' on Sister Act but I was too young to really understand the content of her music. I listened to the Miseducation of Lauryn Hill for the first time when i was 17 years old. That album touched my heart and fed my spirit. At the time, i was a little rough around the edges, head strong and an all around hormonal teenager.The Miseducation taught me about honoring and protecting my body and heart. It taught me to be vigilant about the people I let into my life,and that not everyone is after my best interests. Most importantly that album taught me about the power of love, love between a man and a woman, love from a mother to her child, love of self and the unconditional love God has for all of us. I would not consider Miss Hill to be a hip hop feminist but she has contributed greatly in to the way black women are represented in Hip hop. She mixed her soulful sound with skill and lyrical content in a manner that spoke and continues to speak to Black youth. She urges us as young black woman to take our lives in to our hands and value ourselves and our bodies. She articulates in her song That thing" Don't be a hard rock when you really are a gem. Babygirl, respect is just a minimum."

Blog 2: hip hop feminism

| 1 Comment

I wasn't quite sure of what hip hop feminism was and I am not sure that there is a distinct answer exactly. From what we have learned in class I think that it is a combination of hip hop and making women feel as though what they do is taken seriously and is meaningful. The Essence Of Prodigy Dance Studio Based in the midwest, and is a Dance studio that offers high energy Hip-Hop dance classes specializing & incorporating New Skool Hip-Hop, R&B, Dancehall & variety of other dance styles. All classes are geared toward giving women a fun & enjoyable dance fitness workout in a more relaxed environment. The Essence Of Prodigy Dance Studio is geared toward all age groups. essence of prodigy.jpegHip Hop Star Choreographer PAzAZz has choreographed, assisted in artist development & danced back up for various groups & solo artist both locally and nationally for over 20 years, PAzAZz has worked with many artists including Prince and Paris Bennet from American Idol. He has also worked with many youth group organizations, schools and various corporations such as Verizon Wireless and the Mall of America, just to name a few.

Hip Hop Feminism

| No Comments

To me, hip hop feminism is a way to affirm women's stance in society as strong, independent and confident, owning her individuality. Just like in the article (Ph)eminist by the new school, young girls were taught to use music, dance, and art as a way to express self-reliance and self-respect. What stood out to me was the fact that women in mainstream hip hop completely lost sight of what hip hop was meant to do. From the readings and from my own personal opinion, hip hop was a place to express one's own individuality, not demean themselves. It's sad how people have traded their souls for profit.

Growing up I did not listen to much hip hop and I have absolutely no idea where to find hip hop feminism in the Twin Cities. And just like in the past readings about men and race in hip hop, I believe that it is more culturally acceptable for African people than people of different races to be in the hip hop industry. Maybe it's just because I'm looking at the topics addressed by African women, not of other races. I do believe that people of all races should use hip hop feminism as a way to express themselves, however, it must be about their own personal encounters, and not of others.

The first exposure I had to women in hip hop was probably Missy Elliot, this song:

Although the music video is a bit odd and the lyrics scream mainstream, the beginning definitely embraces how she is not society (or white supremacy) beautiful, cough Nicki Minaji cough cough. Now if I may say so, Missy Elliot is a good representation of hip hop feminism.

Hip Hop Feminism

| No Comments

Honestly, I am not that familiar with hip hop as I look back my childhood. Also, I haven't thought about feminism before. Therefore, I didn't really understand how those two words, hip hop and feminism can be together. But I was able to get some sense of Hip Hop Feminism after I watched the three music videos in last class. The most impressive music video was "U.N.I.T.Y." by Queen Latifah relating hip hop feminism.
lauryn_hill.jpg
I guess hip hop feminism is social and political movement about women's social position using of the hip hop generation. The music video, "U.N.I.T.Y." was hard to understand what she is saying as I heard it at the same time, so I looked up the lyrics in Internet after the class. One of the article that I read through Internet by Katherine Cheairs, she said, "The song spoke out against domestic violence and the objectification of Black female sexuality. "U.N.I.T.Y." began a conversation in the African American community over violence and assault against women. It also established that Black women rappers had a powerful voice in a filed dominated by men."

Also, there is a good quote that helped me to understand hip hop feminism well. In the article, Whitney A. peoples said, " Although there is contention over the nature and potential of hip hop as progressive political practice, some cultural analysis read parts of hip hop culture and rap music as providing political analysis although at times problematic - about racist, sexist, economic, police, and community violence that African-American men and women face." I think hip hop culture is doing an important key role of giving women's voice.
I heard that there are some groups for B-girl in the campus. I haven't seen their showcase, but I guess it will be a great experience to exchange their knowledge of hip hop feminism and black feminism.


Here is the article that I read.
http://www.socialism.com/drupal-6.8/?q=node/717

Hip Hop Feminism

| No Comments

Hip Hop and Feminine Unity

| 1 Comment

When I pledged a sorority my freshman year I never though that it would teach me something about hip hop and hip hop feminism. We were told to listen to U.N.I.T.Y by Queen Latifah during our pledge process and reflect on the lyrics. I thought it was just because unity was another part of sisterhood that we needed to learn about. However, after listening to the song again in class I realized that there was such a deeper meaning, it wasn't just about being a unified force within a sisterhood but as women in general. We have the power to change things and we should never underestimate ourselves and our fellow women.

unity-300x300.jpg

Blog 2: Hip Hop Feminism

| No Comments

I think I have learned more in this class by just sitting back and listening to others debate and discuss than I have in any other class so far this semester. This whole Idea of "Hip Hop Feminism" was/is all very new to me still. When we first started talking about women in hip hop I was advised by Professor Isoke to listen to Lauryn Hill and the Fugees, since I had expressed that I wanted to listen to some real hip hop since my experience with it was so mainstream. And through listening to the Fugee's album "The Score" it was truly a nice introduction. The song "Ready or not" was one of my favorites. In the chorus when Lauryn Hill was saying "I'm gunna find you and take it slowly, and I'm gunna find you and make you want me." This to me is saying how she is going to take control of the man and relationship and take it slow her way. She is going to find someone and make them actually want her as a person and not as a toy or sex object because she is better than that. Even something simple in the video, such as the way she was shown, not as a sex object but as an artist. She is featured in the video because of her talent and voice not because of her body. And through watching some of her individual videos I also learned a lot. The Doo-Wop (That Thing) video was from an amazing perspective also. The split screen aspect and how it showed how much has truly changed from 67 to 98. In my mind I took it as in 1968, women of color didn't necessarily have a voice nor were they featured in videos or really as a part of hip hop yet but now plenty of women are prevalent in the hip hop community. But now with big artists like Nicki Minaj, are they being voiced in the right ways? Artists like Lauryn Hill and Queen Latifa in the 90's were doing an amazing job of being the voice of the unheard women of hip hop but not with the sexual perception of women in hip hop I feel as if women of color in hip hop are now viewed as toys. So is it better to be prevalent in hip hop with a bad reputation than not prevalent at all? Overall I was very inspired by Lauryn Hill and Queen Latifa and the things they rapped about and the inspiration they brought to the hip hop community especially the young girls wanting to have a voice in it.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aIXyKmElvv8

*** I didn't remember how to have the video show up here but this is the Ready or Not video by the Fugee's.

I also found an older interesting article that seemed to almost sort of sum up what we have talked about in class a bit to me. This is the first thing I found when I found out this blog topic since I didn't know anything about hip hop feminism my first instinct... google it. And along with googling hip hop feminism along with Lauryn Hill I found this interesting article that may also be interesting to others so check it out!

http://www.socialism.com/drupal-6.8/?q=node/717

lauryn hill.png

This is a photo of Lauryn Hill.

Hip Hop Feminism at St. Paul Central High School

| 1 Comment

Blog 2: Hip Hop Feminism

| No Comments

Hip hop feminism means something that shed light on women of color through hip hop culture. According to "Under Construction", Eisa Davis says that "Hip-hop gave me a language that made my black womanhood coherent to myself and the world; hip-hop revived me when my soul was balanced from neglect" (26). I found this quotation appealing because it shows how hip-hop feminism can help a woman when she finds her soul and identity.

I don't have that much of knowledge of hip hop feminism in Twin Cities, so I googled hip-hop feminism in Twin Cities and I could find Dessa. She is a Minneapolis-based hip hop musician and does both sing and rap. Dessa shows something masculine through her raps and sings in a beautiful voice showing feminine. This gives her a great freedom to express her inner feeling about family, childhood, addiction and relationships.

I think not many women have been considered as real hip hop musicians. Women in American hip hop have always been an anomaly. Unfortunately, this is just as true for independent artists as those working in the mainstream. Therefore, this inequality of being women hip-hop artist made them more talk about feminism, someone neglected from society and women, more likely women of color. I think this is where hip-hop feminism stems from.


Hip Hop Feminism and the Twin Cities

| No Comments

A few weeks ago I would have thought that the words hip hop feminism could be in no way functionally and honestly combined. When I first think of connecting the two, the immediate image that comes to mind is of the typical, mainstream rap video: A black male at the forefront surrounded by lighter-skinned women, scantily clad, being extremely sexual. This mainstream image of hip hop could not be farther from feminism if it tried. It continually puts women down and perpetuates the view of "black women's sexuality that suggest we are perverse, insatiable, accessible and available at a ghetto near you (Durham). This version of hip hop is all about the image and taking things at face value, or the face that's put forth. Deviating from the mainstream hip hop, there is clearly some difference. Other artists, such as the women we saw in class, MC Lyte and Queen Latifah, choose to use hip hop as a vehicle for social criticism. This is where hip hop feminism becomes a legitimate concept.
Looking away from the mainstream hip hop, there are other current hip hop artists embracing hip hop feminism, male and female. I'm not a Minneapolis native and still consider myself a In the Twin Cities, I see this most with the Doomtree crew, and specifically one of its members; Dessa. Dessa is a well rounded UMN graduate with a degree in philosophy. She's not your typical hip hop, ghetto girl. She's articulate, literate and part of a more recent wave of more conscious hip hop, under the Rhymesayers label that is partly responsible for many of these artists from the Twin Cities, as well as Seattle and other locations. She is aware of her position and novelty as a women in hip hop, but doesn't rely on it. Her lyrics are more literary than sexual, and often with feminist or social justice driven themes. Dess has built a career on quality writing and musicality instead of relying and exploiting her own sexuality to drive her career. Along with her career as a hip hop artist, she also teaches at McNally Smith College of Music and has even published a book of poetry. She has also been involved in numerous local charity and benefit events. Her involvement with these other things while maintaing a career in hip hop exemplifies the empowerment and intellectuality of hip hop feminism.


Hip Hop Feminism and the Twin Cities

| No Comments

A few weeks ago I would have thought that the words hip hop feminism could be in no way functionally and honestly combined. When I first think of connecting the two, the immediate image that comes to mind is of the typical, mainstream rap video: A black male at the forefront surrounded by lighter-skinned women, scantily clad, being extremely sexual. This mainstream image of hip hop could not be farther from feminism if it tried. It continually puts women down and perpetuates the view of "black women's sexuality that suggest we are perverse, insatiable, accessible and available at a ghetto near you (Durham). This version of hip hop is all about the image and taking things at face value, or the face that's put forth. Deviating from the mainstream hip hop, there is clearly some difference. Other artists, such as the women we saw in class, MC Lyte and Queen Latifah, choose to use hip hop as a vehicle for social criticism. This is where hip hop feminism becomes a legitimate concept.
Looking away from the mainstream hip hop, there are other current hip hop artists embracing hip hop feminism, male and female. I'm not a Minneapolis native and still consider myself a In the Twin Cities, I see this most with the Doomtree crew, and specifically one of its members; Dessa. Dessa is a well rounded UMN graduate with a degree in philosophy. She's not your typical hip hop, ghetto girl. She's articulate, literate and part of a more recent wave of more conscious hip hop, under the Rhymesayers label that is partly responsible for many of these artists from the Twin Cities, as well as Seattle and other locations. She is aware of her position and novelty as a women in hip hop, but doesn't rely on it. Her lyrics are more literary than sexual, and often with feminist or social justice driven themes. Dess has built a career on quality writing and musicality instead of relying and exploiting her own sexuality to drive her career. Along with her career as a hip hop artist, she also teaches at McNally Smith College of Music and has even published a book of poetry. She has also been involved in numerous local charity and benefit events. Her involvement with these other things while maintaing a career in hip hop exemplifies the empowerment and intellectuality of hip hop feminism.


Hip Hop Feminism and the Twin Cities

| No Comments

A few weeks ago I would have thought that the words hip hop feminism could be in no way functionally and honestly combined. When I first think of connecting the two, the immediate image that comes to mind is of the typical, mainstream rap video: A black male at the forefront surrounded by lighter-skinned women, scantily clad, being extremely sexual. This mainstream image of hip hop could not be farther from feminism if it tried. It continually puts women down and perpetuates the view of "black women's sexuality that suggest we are perverse, insatiable, accessible and available at a ghetto near you (Durham). This version of hip hop is all about the image and taking things at face value, or the face that's put forth. Deviating from the mainstream hip hop, there is clearly some difference. Other artists, such as the women we saw in class, MC Lyte and Queen Latifah, choose to use hip hop as a vehicle for social criticism. This is where hip hop feminism becomes a legitimate concept.
Looking away from the mainstream hip hop, there are other current hip hop artists embracing hip hop feminism, male and female. I'm not a Minneapolis native and still consider myself a In the Twin Cities, I see this most with the Doomtree crew, and specifically one of its members; Dessa. Dessa is a well rounded UMN graduate with a degree in philosophy. She's not your typical hip hop, ghetto girl. She's articulate, literate and part of a more recent wave of more conscious hip hop, under the Rhymesayers label that is partly responsible for many of these artists from the Twin Cities, as well as Seattle and other locations. She is aware of her position and novelty as a women in hip hop, but doesn't rely on it. Her lyrics are more literary than sexual, and often with feminist or social justice driven themes. Dess has built a career on quality writing and musicality instead of relying and exploiting her own sexuality to drive her career. Along with her career as a hip hop artist, she also teaches at McNally Smith College of Music and has even published a book of poetry. She has also been involved in numerous local charity and benefit events. Her involvement with these other things while maintaing a career in hip hop exemplifies the empowerment and intellectuality of hip hop feminism.


Hip Hop Feminism

| 1 Comment

To promote gender equality through music, art, and dancing is what I think of when I hear the term hip hop feminism. Feminism is a way for women to get their voices out there and music has proven to be a great way to do so. Women have been able to discuss various issues in their music that center around the struggles and hardships women have gone through, especially those of color. They have talked about sexual harassment and domestic violence in their work which gets the message in the public that women are standing up for themselves. Women in hip hop seem to have more of a voice because they are not scared to say everything they want, even if they get criticized.
A quote that really stood out to me in the reading "Under Construction" was "'holding on to that protective mantle of victimization requires a hypocrisy and self-censorship I'm no longer willing to give. Calling rappers out for their sexism without mentioning the complicity of the 100 or so video-hos that turned up-G-sting in hand for the shoot...'" (Morgan1999,60). This caught my attention because it describes the way women want to be felt sorry for when they are portrayed as sex objects in the media yet they are the ones throwing themselves at any opportunity to be in the questioned video. Women can't play the victim if they are going to give in to the stereotype. Women in these videos aren't so much feminist because they partake in being objects, not advocates.
I personally think hip hop can be seen everywhere in the Twin Cities. It can be seen in the way people dress to the graffiti on buildings to the music played on the streets. Hip hop can be found anywhere, you just need to search for it. One of the main feminist hip hop artists from the Twin Cities is Dessa who started out as a spoken word poet and made her way into hip hop in the group Doomtree. Her song "Go Home" has a great message that shows women are strong enough to say no to men. Women can be the dominate one in a relationnship and not allow the man to walk all over them.

Hip Hop Feminism in the Twin Cities

| 1 Comment

Hip Hop Feminism as described in Under Constuction was a very interesting thing to read about. I was intrigued by how hip hop feminism tries to connect with people that might not consider themselves 'feminists' or want anything to do with feminism for that matter. By connecting on a level and using a tool that is already engrained in many peoples lives (hip hop) hip hop feminism tries to raise awareness of feminist ideals to an audience that would could be unreceptive or otherwise in the dark.

hip hop feminism and its presence in the twin cities

| No Comments

For me, hip hop feminism means more than applying feminist thought to the hip hop culture. It's about spreading the opposition of sexism, racism, misogyny, and institutionalized discrimination in general through means that can reach a wide range of people who may not normally be exposed to it. By using music and lyrics, graffiti, dance, and even spoken word (although this may not be considered "hip hop"), hip hop feminists are taking advantage of the tools that would normally be used to promote the values and ideas that they are trying to contradict. In her article "Under Construction" Whitney Peoples expresses a similar view: "... hip hop emerges as what I term 'the generational and culturally relevant vehicle' through which hip hop feminists can spread their message of critical analysis and empowerment" (Peoples, 25). Feminism can be found in all four of these aspects of hip hop in the Twin Cities. Dessa, a rapper/singer and spoken word artist, has become extremely well known in the Cities, especially to white, middle class young adults that may have otherwise not been exposed to hip hop feminism. She especially discusses women oppression and abuse in her lyrics. In her song titled "Chaconne" Dessa writes:
"I hear you keep
Your pretty wife alive
On only brie
They say a dozen years ago
She could have passed for me
She doesn't trust you with the baby
Maybe better that way"

Although hip hop feminism is usually associated with black feminism, I think it is important to be seen as a tool for all women. Misogyny and domestic abuse is a problem faced by women of every race, age, and socioeconomic status, and it is important to extend feminism, including hip hop feminism, to all of these women.

AniDessa02.jpeg

Hip Hop Feminism In the Twin Cities

| No Comments

I have no knowledge of any kind of hip hop culture coming out of the Twin Cities, let alone hip hop feminist culture. Therefore, for this blog I took to a good, old-fashioned Google search. And it actually led me to some really cool things. First I started by going to the Current's website. This led me to a column called "state of the arts" that highlights local happenings in the arts community of Minneapolis. And that column led me to Maia Maiden. She led me to her dance troupe ConsciousSpirit. ConsciousSpirit is a local dance troupe of five women who support, promote and actively engage hip hop and the arts in and around Minneapolis. They host an event called "Rooted" that highlights Hip Hop cheorography.
Here is a link to their website: http://consciousspiritmovement.com/

But one event that they are involved in is one that actually hasn't happened yet; It is called "This was made for women's bodies." This is a performance piece inspired by a work by Maya Angelou that explores different female experience through the body, dance and spoken word.
Here is a link to the event info: http://intermediaarts.org/catalyst-series-this-was-made-for-womens-bodies

Upon reading about this performance peice I was immediately reminded of a section is Aisha Durham's article " Using [Living hip-hop] Feminism. It goes as such:

"In an increasingly media-centric society, music, movies and television can serve as pedagogical tools to teach us abouot ourselves and others. [...] We speak through representation."

She then goes on to discuss her performance piece where her body clashed with the lyrics to a Ludacris song while at a halloween party. She discussed how this song was falsely representing her as a black women, but somehow the song made it 'okay' for this man to approach her the way he did. I think it is incredibly important to know that in order to break these false representations, you first have to be aware that they are there. And I think that you can do that in interesting and non-interesting ways. For instance, you can be self aware. Knowing that certain representations of females are false and constructed is a positive and can help with your own personal identity. However, you can also take it one step further and share it with others. This can be done through just talking or, like ConsciousSpirit, through dance. These women are taking control of these representations by protraying their own TRUE experiences through their own bodies, not through other means.

p.s. I apologize, I could not figure out how to make the links clickable, but if you copy and paste them they will take you to the right place!

Hip Hop Feminism in the Twin Cities

| 1 Comment

For me, Hip Hop Feminism is really a response by women to all of the misogyny, sexism, objectification, and exploitation that they face, through the lens of hip hop. In the videos we watched in class, specifically MC Lyte and Queen Latifah, you can see them standing up to those experiences. Each of them is taking a stance against the discrimination that they face, in Queen Latifah's song U.N.I.T.Y, she talks about being called a "bitch" and a "hoe", and also about being groped on the street. When she is rapping these lyrics and acting as the storyteller, it allows other women to relate and unite together to take a stand. I think that is what Hip Hop Feminism is all about. In Aisha Durham's article I really responded the line where she speaks about black women being readily available in a ghetto near you. This really showed me that the people who are running these capitalist systems and making all of the money off of these ideas are not thinking about the consequences of the information that they are subjugating into our society. Because of many of these notions, violence and exploitation against women becomes justified. Here in the Twin Cities I am not really sure where a community space for Hip Hop Feminism is, although I am sure that there are some (consequence of my suburban upbringing). I also think that Hip Hop Feminism is probably different everywhere you go depending on race, ethnicity, gender and geographic location, but I think that at it's core the ideals and values are the same.

UNITY.jpg

Hip Hop Feminism in the Twin Cities

| 1 Comment

Hip-hop feminism has been relevant before a term for it even existed. It began when artists like Queen Latifiah and MC Lyte rapped about feminist issues like domestic violence and sexual harassment. They used their hip-hop prominence as a platform to advocate for gender equality. It took a lot of courage for these women to stand up against the misogyny that was present in such a dominantly male hip-hop world because lyrics about bitches and hoes were so standardized within the hip-hop culture. These women empowered themselves and other women by objecting the ideals and values that had previously been preached throughout the hip-hop culture. They took back their agency and gave themselves a voice instead of letting others speak for them.

I think it is important to note that hip-hop feminism does not mean it needs to be represented by a woman. There are many affluent rappers, artists, graffiti writers, etc. that discuss feminist issues and challenge the oppression that exists in our society. With that being said I think that hip-hop feminism is all over the twin cities. It's notable in much of the graffiti that you see on trains and in the lyrics that artists like Atmosphere and Doomtree write. They are speaking out against important political and social issues. I think that these methods of dispersing feminist discourse are very successful since they are spread across the nation. Trains spread the messages from state to state while music is spread from ear to ear.

I could not get my picture to properly scale down to size, but you are able to click on it and it will bring the full picture up into another window.

IMAG2632.jpg

About this Archive

This page is an archive of entries from October 2012 listed from newest to oldest.

September 2012 is the previous archive.

November 2012 is the next archive.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.

Categories

Powered by Movable Type 4.31-en