Does hip hop hate women?
Posted Dec 7 2007
• She discussed the formation of her Anomalies crew and made sure to mention that there are many dope female emcees out there who are not recognized. That’s different from not existing.
• Discussed her community organizing work, including media literacy and trying to offset the stereotyping of her hometown Detroit, and women in general. However, beyond education, need to create and work towards actual solutions.
• On the business-side, she emphasized the importance of developing your own company so you can control the creation of the music and how you’re represented. She emphasized that she it wasn’t a Trojan horse situation as some way to become part of the corporate world. She also shouted out Mike Banks of Underground Resistance in Detroit for inspiring her.
Mark Anthony Neal intro
• Challenged the BET special “Hip Hop VS America” as being misnamed since hip hop doesn’t exist outside of America. Nelly and T.I. were on the stage at all times, which shows that BET was appealing to a certain audience. The show was less of a discussion and more for entertainment. He also noted that it’s wrong to expect corporations to engage in meaningful discussions.
• In regards to the Congressional hearings on hip hop*, Neal said that the real issue isn’t how hip hop treats Black women, but the hearings should’ve been about the social conditions of Black women that exist and existed before hip hop existed. He noted that there were no women in the discussion until the gender-specific panel came up and by then, most of the men who needed to hear had left. This type of thinking keeps women in a box.
• He also discussed David Banner’s comments at the hearings, including his assertion that the word n*gg*/n*gg*r has been around for hundreds of years, but now that Black folks are using it to make money it’s wrong. Also, Banner’s comment about the money that many artists make benefits the community (such as Banner’s work around Hurricane Katrina) so it’s OK if they’re dogging out women. Neal noted that it’s easy to be critical of Banner and the holes in his argument and proposed that someone send him a box of books on feminism. He argued that Banner has the ability and skills to think critically and that he needs tools since young people listen to him, and not scholars on panels at Stanford.
• He asked why there were not more artists on panels. His argument was that they don’t have the knowledge and awareness of the issues so there’s no point in bringing them on panel to get beat up.
Joan Morgan intro
• Issues of gender are much larger than hip hop. Felt that these discussions limit her as the majority of discussion about gender have no reference to hip hop. Can talk to her girlfriends to three in the morning and it never comes up.
• Doesn’t mind the “b” word. It can very efficiently convey certain emotions. Discussing the ‘b’ and ‘n’ words usually lets people off the hook from real issues.
• She argues that talking about Black women’s lives through hip hop is a really narrow lens. Wanted to make it known that when she leaves she doesn’t “live hip hop.” She didn’t watch the hip-hop awards on BET nor the Congressional hearings.
• Felt like there needs to be younger people on panels, who are directly involved with hip hop.