This presentation will demonstrate that hip hop and rap is, as Robin D.G. Kelley argues, “arguably the post Civil Rights Era’s highest form of creative, extemporaneous, ever evolving form of communication and expression.” Whitaker will argue that it developed as collective critique of the stigmatization and marginalization of black youth, and has evolved into a transracial, multilayered, global analysis of perception and power.
Matthew C. Whitaker is Arizona State University Foundation Professor of History and the founding director of the Center for the Study of Race and Democracy. He specializes in U.S. history, African American history and life, civil rights, race relations, social movements, and sports and society. Whitaker is the author of Race Work: The Rise of Civil Rights in the Urban West and the recently released Peace Be Still: Modern Black America from World War II to Barack Obama. He has spoken throughout the world, won over 30 awards for his teaching, research, and service, and offered commentaries on CNN, NPR, PBS, and other media outlets.