Lecture 3 – Hip Hop Wars Pt. 1
September 24, 2012
• H. Samy Alim - created the term "hiphopography". It is a research method where you go out
into the community and observe people on the grounds. The body is the research instrument and
you come in contact and communicate with people.
• Ethnography originally was done by white men who go into other communities that are part of
the English colonies to study their cultures.
• The reflexive turn occurred around the 70s where ethnographers realized that there were issues
with the knowledge produced from these accounts. Colonies resented the English and secondly,
the ethnographers were racially different from these communities.
• Two types of views that arise from this study:
• Etic - outsider's perspective. objective norms that arise from this knowledge. When
ethnographers were writing about these cultural traditions that are very important, they've
brushed it off as something insignificant. Own personal biases and ideas are placed into the
Emic - insider's perspective. The practices and lifestyles were lived.
• Alim's idea is that if we want to study hip hip, we have to study on their grounds and get into
The Hip Hop Wars Part 1
• Her most prominent book titled Black Noise voiced a positive perspective on hip hop culture.
• The Hip Hop Wars was written almost 10 years later where her views on hip hop culture has
changed to something more negative. There was a complete contrast to what hip hop has become
to what it once was.
• Rose was writing about hip hop music with social messages. Hip hop at the time was reflecting
the long term effects of structural inequality like youth criminalization, hypersegregation, etc.
• Hip hop has gone under some growth spurt where hip hop has completely changed.
• Goal for this movement is a push towards social movement. We have to be critical and change
some of the debate and critiques surrounding hip hop. A lot of these debates are misinformed or
only represent partial truth.
• Commercial hip hop and it's rise - hip hop music filled with destructive images of misogyny
and violence. She is not throwing hip hop in general under the bus, but more so commercialized