"Mexican hip hop in NYC epresents the opportunity to both re-emphasize hip hop's multicultural and afro-diasporic roots, while also explore Spanish as a new frontier for rapping. Since The Black Atlantic, Paul Gilroy has problematized the notion of black authenticity. As he points out, hip hop is significant for the black atlantic because it of its unique history of "cross fertilization of African-American vernacular cultures with their Caribbean equivalents" (103) in spite of the reality that "black music is so often the principal symbol of racial authenticity" (34). As such, while hip hop's popularization as the authentic Black American culture is a powerful one, it is also a clear reflection of the status of nationality and national cultures in a post-modern era (Gilroy 34). Here we face a clear conundrum. If, as Gilory argues, black music reflects a certain type of national authenticity, than the perception of hip hop's as authentically black American is problematic. It certainly does not reflect hip hop's history, nor its present, but instead an act of erasure on the part of the white America to streamline US culture into something racially categorizable."
Feel free to let me know what you think.... Up next week, we work on questions of labor, both past and present.