Why White Kids Love Hip Hop
Wangstas, Wiggers, Wannabes, and the New Reality of Race in America
Paperback: 240 pages Publisher: Basic Civitas Books (May 30, 2006) Language: English ISBN-10: 046503747X ISBN-13: 978-0465037476
In Why White Kids Love Hip-Hop, Bakari Kitwana makes the case that there is a new reality of race in America and that the old discussion of white appropriation does a disservice to what's really at stake as white kids, popular culture and hip-hop meet. "The younger generation of Americans (generation X and the millennium generation) who have lived their entire lives in post-segregation United States are processing race in radically different ways from their parents," Kitwana explains. "And they are beginning to set forth a new racial politics that departs from the old divide and conquer essentialism that has heretofore dominated race relations." Although departures from the old racial politics aren't unique to this generation, he argues, there was never an institutional structure to advance it. By contrast, such an infrastructure has emerged in hip-hop's contemporary cultural movement—from the commercial national manifestations to the local ones. Why White Kids Love Hip-Hop explores the ways these new dynamics may help us to once and for all leave the old racial politics on the pages of history where they belong.
What the Critics are Saying:
Marcyliena Morgan, Founder, The Hip-Hop Archive
“Bakari Kitwana speaks for both African Americans in hip-hop who demand an inclusive world and for whites who are negotiating the racial landscape. He shares his vision of a hip-hop political movement that gives voice and representation to those long ignored.”
Michael Eric Dyson, author of Holler If You Hear Me and Is Bill Cosby Right?
“Bakari Kitwana has provided a myth-busting, stereotype shattering, paradigm-shifting examination of the complex relationship between white youth and black popular culture. Eschewing tired clichés, refusing racial pieties, and resisting old habits of thought, Kitwana clears a brilliant path to fresh insight.”
Racquel Z. Rivera, author of New York Ricans from the Hip Hop Zone
“A powerful, provocative book. Bakari Kitwana demonstrates not only that hip-hop is vibrantly alive, but also that its importance goes way beyond the usual controversies over lyrics and video images. In fact, it’s crucial for understanding youth culture and contemporary racial politics in the United States.”
Jeff Chang, author of Can’t Stop, Won’t Stop: A History of the Hip Hop Generation
“A fearless, bracing and expansive intellect, Bakari Kitwana persuasively argues that the hip-hop generation has transformed how race is lived in America, and could be ready to transform its political realities too. Why White Kids Love Hip-Hop confirms his place as one of the most important thinkers of our generation.”
Yvonne Bynoe, author of Stand and Deliver: Political Activism, Leadership and Hip Hop Culture
“This provocative book reveals how hip-hop has altered conventional ‘racial politics.’ Kitwana does not shy away from the lingering truths, stereotypes, and contradictions related to hip-hop, but he is clear that everyone can enjoy and experience hip-hop—just not at the expense of young Blacks who now, as in the beginning, remain its driving, creative force.”