To promote the historical, intellectual, social, and moral welfare of persons of African descent and the Diaspora.
Tuesday, March 1, 2011
Carter G. Woodson, Hip Hop, and The Syllabus
Created as an attempt to "dramatize the achievement of persons of African blood" on February 7, 1926, Carter G. Woodson organized Negro History Week. This Week was expanded to Black History Month during the 1960s. Woodson's policy was said to be one of "telling the whole truth and nothing but the truth regardless of whom it affected."
Hip Hop, at its best continues in this tradition of "whole truth" telling in its more than 30 year history. The artistry of Hip Hop has at times memorialized Black History as best heard in KRS-1 "You Must Learn,"
to calling attention to the Black community's relationship to the police and ambulatory services in urban centers as heard in J. Dilla's "Fuck the Police" and Public Enemy's "911 is a Joke."
The goal of THE SYALLBUS (my mixtape project), like any syllabus is to present the HIGHEST quality of education to the people. This education is distributed through tracks or "lessons" from each teacher or Rapper, on topics ranging from Black Relationships, Diaspora Knowledge,Black Teen Preganancy as heard in Tupac's "Brenda's Got a Baby"
the concept of Blackness, the Urban condition, Black Femininity as heard in Queen Latifah's "Ladies First"
Black Stereotypes, Black Freedom, and the Black Condition as heard in EarthGang's "Thump, Thump, Thump" (Hampton University's emerging sensation from Atlanta, Georgia and on a personal note former students of my History 107 Survey of African American History course).
This project remains true to Dr. Carter G. Woodson's mission, which is to record (in this case collect) the story of the "people of African blood" and to tell this story "regardless of whom it affected."
I hope you enjoy this mixtape. I hope it encourages you to take action in some creative and positive way.
I dedicate this project to The Children of the Light who desire a world full of upliftment, concioussness, correct history, and truth; Amisah (my niece, age 2), Donovyn (my cousin, age 3), and Chloe' (my goddaughter, age 3).
QUESTION: Does Hip Hop reflect WELL the history and issues of "the people of African blood?
THE SYLLABUS v. 1
With tracks "lessons" from Tupac, Nas, Jay Electronica, and Hampton University's EarthGang.
Why did I create this Project? I asked myself, Are there songs that have positively memorialized and reflected Black History, Black Relationships, Diaspora Knowledge, Black Teen Pregnancy, Blackness, Black Stereotypes, Black Freedom, and the Black Femininity, and the Black Condition just to name a few? The ANSWER is YES! Like any student knows, THE SYLLABUS reflects the HIGHEST of literature that reflects the topics that will be discussed that EVERYONE MUST know. I present to YOU my research in THE SYLLABUS.