Department of African + African American Studies (AAAS)
Mark Anthony Neal, Ph.D.
9th Wonder (Patrick Douthit)
What began as a localized activity designed to provide a safe haven for Black and Latino youth in New York City in the early 1970s, has become a global movement with a documented impact on cultural, political and economic realities throughout the globe. Co-taught by Grammy Award-winning producer and record label head 9th Wonder (Patrick Douthit) and Mark Anthony Neal, a noted scholar of Black Cultural Studies, the course will examine the organic social, cultural and economic foundations of Hip-Hop Culture, as well as the key aesthetic innovators/innovations, and the debates that have arisen over Hip-Hop’s increased visibility, influence and profitability. As with previous iterations of the course, the thematic center pivots on classic Hip-Hop recordings; This semester students will examine the impact of three recordings, Eric B. & Rakim’s Paid in Full (July 7, 1987); The Notorious B.I.G.’s Life After Death (March 25, 1997); Erykah Badu’s Baduizm(February 11, 1997). The three recordings exemplify, the foundational tensions of culture vs. commerce and spirituality vs. secularism which the course will explore more broadly.