How do subcultural art movements impact the larger cultures in which they develop, and their societies at large? Such was the question posed by IVY Thought Leader and beloved Georgetown lecturer, Dr. Ellen Gorman, who guided IVY members through a riveting exploration of the politics of hip hop and rap in America.

Originating in the Bronx in the early 1970s, the hip hop movement came to life as an expression of rebellion and discontent in African American communities experiencing urban poverty. The hip hop movement is considered “subcultural” because it developed within the larger American culture by a cultural group whose beliefs, experiences, and interests were at variance with those of the larger culture. The American public has long associated hip hop with African American communities; since the late 1990s, however, rap music experienced some of its highest popularity among white suburbia. Dr. Gorman attributes this to American music labels’ corporatization of rap music as marketable genre, and explains the impact of this corporatization on racial politics, multiculturalism, and fairness in America today.

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