2nd Annual Rap Sessions Speaking Tour Launches, Focuses On Women

As the ongoing

debate over misogyny and Hip-Hop rages on Rap Sessions, a 10-city speaking tour,

will launch in March to examine the role Hip-Hop plays in influencing relationships

between young women and men.The

Rap Sessions speaking tour will Kick of at Purdue University on March 5 and concludes

at the University of California in April.Panelists

include Duke University professor Mark Anthony Neal, Hip-Hop journalist Joan Morgan

(When Chickenheads Come Home to Roost: My Life as a Hip-Hop Feminist),

filmmaker Byron Hurt (director of Beyond Beats and Rhymes) and professor

Tracy Sharpley-Whiting, director of African American and Diaspora Studies at Vanderbilt

University.Rap

Sessions will focus on the stereotypical representations of women and men in the

Hip-Hop generation. Additionally,

strategies will be developed to help ensure that Hip-Hop’s emerging political

movement is inclusive of an empowering agenda for women. "For too

long the Hip-Hop community has failed to set forth a national agenda for women,"

moderator and Hip-Hop activist Bakari Kitwana said. “The goal of these gatherings

is to jump start a national discussion that asks young people, the Hip-Hop industry

and our policy makers to assume responsibility for their complicity in making

Hip-Hop synonymous with misogyny and homophobia." Rap Sessions was

launched in 2005. Its first national tour which brought townhall-style meetings

focused on race and Hip-Hop to 15 cities across the country. The

forums were designed to jump-start crucial local debate and connect local Hip-Hop

communities to national Hip-Hop arts/activists networks. For more information,

log on to www.rapsessions.org.

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