This session features the principle that Hip Hop performs an important social function, and consequently the messaging within it. We will examine why and how something so controversial and marginal could become so mainstream and central, becoming a billion-dollar business today! Using history as a backdrop, we explore particular genres, artists, styles, sounds, images, and rhetorical techniques within the Hip Hop movement. Finally, by analyzing the various literary, musical, and methodological techniques employed in Hip Hop, participants will better understand the messages, meanings, and impact of this artistic form and hear how they can better use this medium constructively today.
Frederick W. Gooding, Jr. is an Assistant Professor within the Ethnic Studies Program at Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff, AZ. A trained historian, Gooding most effectively analyzes contemporary mainstream media with a careful eye for persistent patterns along racial lines that appear benign but indeed have problematic historical roots. A developing scholar, Gooding’s most well-known work thus far is You Mean, There’s RACE in My Movie? The Complete Guide to Understanding Race in Mainstream Hollywood, which critically analyzes the value and impact of contemporary racial imagery based upon historical narratives of sex, power and violence.