Strange bedfellows

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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

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This page contains a single entry by Alex published on October 3, 2012 12:16 PM.

Who are we to say? was the previous entry in this blog.

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