Jay-Z now a Course Taught at Georgetown: “Sociology of Hip-Hop: Jay-Z”

October 18, 2011 at 6:27 pm Leave a comment

This fall, Georgetown University has announced that noted educator, Dr. Michael Eric Dyson, will be teaching a course revolving around hip hop mogul Jay Z and his book Decoded. For the millions who know him as the greatest rapper alive and an unparalleled cultural and business icon, Decoded is the story of the legendary Jay-Z, told through lyrics, images, and a powerful and surprising personal narrative. This is an intimate, first-person portrait of the life and art of Jay-Z, organized around a “decoding” of his most famous and provocative lyrics.

Prof. Dyson describes the course as follows: “We look at his incredible body of work, we look at his own understanding of his work, we look at others who reflect upon him, and then we ask the students to engage in critical analysis of Jay-Z himself.”  For more information on the course, see video at: http://rapfix.mtv.com/2011/10/10/michael-eric-dyson-on-jay-z-georgetown-university-course/

“Compelling. . . . Part autobiography, part lavishly illustrated commentary on the author’s own work, Decoded gives the reader a harrowing portrait of the rough worlds Jay-Z navigated in his youth, while at the same time deconstructing his lyrics. . . . [P]rovocative, evocative. . . .” —Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times

“As a collection of lyrics alone, Decoded is an essential contribution. It joins a growing body of works . . . that place the rap lyric in its proper context within the American popular songbook and the broader tradition of poetry through the ages.  Throughout the book, he continually makes the case for understanding rappers as poets, complex artists capable of rendering the familiar unfamiliar, embodying paradox and tension in their lyrics, and making things beautiful – and ugly too – as artists at their best always do.”
— Adam Bradley, co-editor of The Anthology of Rap and contributor, Salon.com

“[Decoded] is a classic American story. . . . But it’s darker—more real—than the usual Horatio Alger myth. . . . [A]n impressive leap by a man who has never been known for small steps.” —Los Angeles Times

“Hip-hop’s renaissance man drops a classic. . . . Heartfelt, passionate and slick.” —Kirkus, starred review

To order an examination copy, click here.

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Entry filed under: African and African American, Business & Economics, cultural studies, Literature, Sociology, Uncategorized. Tags: , , , , , , , .

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