This is an overview of the chapters in this book. The link to the chapters provide further details about the specific resources available in those chapters.
- Links hip hop rhyme, storytelling, and drum patterns to rhyming, storytelling, and drum patterns in African culture, to suggest both continuity and an understanding of hip hop’s growth in Africa.
- Defines hip hop in Africa vis-a-vis other forms of popular music in Africa, as well as U.S. hip hop.
- Takes on the question of “authenticity” with an analysis of the employment of established hip hop rhyme schemes found in hip hop in Africa.
- Argues the existence of a musical relationship between the continent and the US Diaspora, as well as within the continent, through the use of sampling and collaborations.
Chapter 2: “Understand Where I’m Coming From”: The Growth of African Hip Hop and Representations of African Culture
- Argues that economic and political events on the continent in the 1980s and 1990s led to the development and politicization of hip hop culture
- Details the ways in which hip hop emerged as a tool to represent social dissonance
- Presents hip hop as a cultural representation beyond the music, specifically the use graffiti, media (film, magazines, radio), and fashion as forms of cultural representations within hip hop culture.
Chapter 3: “Lettre à Mr Le Président”: Social and Political Representations: Protest v. Combat Literature
- Examines the varying relationships between the state and hip hop communities in Africa.
- Uses Frantz Fanon’s analysis of protest and combat literature to examine the use of hip hop in social protest and social change in Africa.
- Examines the role of hip hop in mobilizing for social and political change in the past 10 years.
- Examines select social and human rights issues that hip hop artists in Africa have engaged through their music.
- Examines the cultural (local and global) environments in which female artists operate
- Argues that the use of the hip hop tradition of braggadocio is used by artists to force a space for themselves in hip hop communities and serves to challenge ideas of femininity.
- Argues that female artists present more nuanced representations of women and gendered social issues.
- Examines the varying representations of female sexuality, sexual pleasure, and sexual identity by African female artists as legitimate representations of African womanhood.
- Argues that US based African artists represent post-2000 African migrant experiences that differ from previous waves of African migrants
- Examines African migrant artists representations of alienation, ties to home, and transnationalism
- Argues that Diaspora-based African hip hop artists present additional considerations in the debate over “Afropolitanism” as a cultural identity for contemporary, hypertransnational African migrants.
- Argues that the use of African American Vernacular English and the employment of codeswitching by African migrant hip hop artists are representations of transnationalism among contemporary African migrants.
- Argues that the ways in which hip hop artists use language to “represent” their identities speaks to variations in cultural identities and cultural competencies among African hip hop artists.