Tricia Rose talks hip hop with Ceasefire Magazine

Ceasefire Magazine published a fascinating interview about hip hop with Brown University professor and Black Noise author Tricia Rose. She discusses how mainstream rappers often stay silent on important issues because speaking out might interfere with their quest for racks on racks on racks.

My favorite quote from the interview:

Let’s actually ‘keep it real.” Many of today’s biggest artists (not all, of course) are selling grotesque, entertaining portrayals of black street culture without narrative critique of the system that has chewed up and discarded a whole generation of poor black and brown young men and women. To challenge and fight publicly against this system would reduce their marketability; limit their profits. It just wouldn’t be as fun for people to consume the images once they are tethered to such suffering. The days of “I have to feed my kids” justification are over for the high profile rappers who pander to these images and narratives. Those who still make this excuse all the way to the bank for decades are lying.

Read the complete interview at Ceasefire Magazine, or watch a clip of Professor Rose speaking at a hip hop panel below:

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