Malcolm Gladwell says, “It takes 10,000 hours of intensive practice to achieve mastery of complex skills and materials.” What if, after all of that effort, the thing that you worked so hard for/on was taken away from you? What are you left with? Who are you without the activity, the ability, the gift you invested so deeply to develop. These questions are ones that have challenged me— and dancers I know— when we experience loss. My mind turmoils over understanding my body’s present state in relation to what it was and what I desire it to be. This blog post holds a story about how I first confronted these questions, and how they shaped me to be a friend for another dancing soul.
Negus- noun: Kingship, royalty. Inspired by the works of artists such as Kendrick Lamar and Kehinde Wiley, I wanted to explore different levels of identity and representation of the black male in the United States. "Negus" is a Hip-hop work that asks African-American males, where do we come from, who are we now, what values [...]
As much as the prison complex and the rap industry affect the livelihood of black males in society, they also affect the way in which black males are seen in this society. Again, the understanding of how a criminal label can affect how you are seen is fairly simple, but the role of the commercial [...]
Part 3: Ice Cube—previous member of the rap group, NWA—in The Art of Rap says, “What [street knowledge] means to me is letting the streets know what the politicians is trying to do to them and then letting the politicians know what the streets think of them, if they’re listening.” In the same interview, Ice [...]
Part 2: Interestingly, there has been another movement, the Hip-hop movement, transpiring in urban environments, especially amongst African American males. Hip-hop’s music has always been used to represent a counter-cultural movement. However, the ways in which Hip-hop has accomplished this has shifted since it has become more commodified. In the 1980’s and 90’s Hip-hop was [...]
This project explores the impact of many commercial rap songs on our society in regards to the representation of blackness in America. It also combats the use of glorifying criminalization within rap songs as a way to silence the productive voices of blackness and black people in this country. Enjoy! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LbnneR--Ucs&feature=youtu.be
This post is part 1 of a paper I wrote about the correlation between the rise of mass incarceration in America and the rise of thug culture glorified within commercial rap music.
HIP-HOP: Healing, Intelligence, Purpose- Hate, Obnoxious, Pain. Like anything and everything in this world, Hip-hop contains both good and bad. However, what side you stand on as you claim, “I am Hip-hop” is what decides the fate, memory, and trajectory of the culture. KRS-One claims that one of the first rules to being a Hip-hoppa’ [...]
I want to tell y’all a story 'cuz Hip-hop showed me something… I remember witnessing 20-plus students in my classroom allow fear and insecurity to inhibit them from comforting and helping a couple of vulnerable students. See, I had given the class a task: Create a circle One person at a time: go into [...]
Two weekends ago I was the most excited I’ve been in a while. I was going to see one of the most prominent figures in Hip-hop music and culture: Kendrick Lamar. I was hype because although I’m a Hip-hop dancer, I really don’t get down with a lot of rappers. Kendrick, however, is one of [...]