PERFORMING ARTS

Freedom Moves: Hip Hop Knowledges, Pedagogies, and Futures

Univ. of California Jan. 2023. 478p. ed. by H. Samy Alim & others. ISBN 9780520382800. pap. $29.95. MUSIC
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Artists, educators, and activists discuss how hip-hop goes beyond music in this prolific and illuminating book. Conversations with U.S. rappers and international hip-hop artists detail how their music informs audiences about their country’s social justice issues. Scholars highlight their use of hip-hop when teaching students about topics ranging from civil rights to science. Alim (Neva Again), Jeff Chang (Can’t Stop Won’t Stop), and Casey Wong’s (Pray You Catch Me) book shines brightest when it provides perspectives not often told in the world of hip-hop. A captivating discussion with a community activist highlights the creation of Krip-Hop Nation, an association of artists with disabilities. Feminists reframe the genre’s history of misogyny with a discussion on Black women and their sexuality. Local artists and activists fervently discuss their work with youth and teen organizations and how they are trying to counteract the effects of oppression and police brutality in their cities with knowledge. Most of the chapters include songs and spoken word poetry that tell of pain and suffering, while it simultaneously keeps the power in the hands of the storyteller.
VERDICT All academic libraries as well as public libraries with high community activism should purchase this. Includes photos and an index.
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