Hip Hop Culture and America's Most Taboo Word

The associations between hip hop and use of the “n word” have been the focus of a great deal of public debate. Drawing on research in Chicago focused especially on Latino performers, this article looks at the controversy from within hip hop culture itself, examining the norms that regulate the use of the “n word.” These rules are dependent upon context as well as one’s position in the racial hierarchy.

online resources

online video

Sonny Black, “Watch Yo Mouth”: the same song described by Harkness in the article’s opening paragraphs:

Frank Nit, interviewed in Harkness’ article:

Pinqy Ring, also interview in the article:

Bill Cosby and Tim Russert discuss the n-word in hip hop:

online audio

further reading

Who gets to use the N word?, an interview with Jabari Asim, author of The N Word in Salon.

Comments 2


July 5, 2012

How is this making research accessible to general readers if you have to pay for it?


December 8, 2012

Thanks for hosting the hop, I love the video! We had a cat who would sleep in a shoe box (he was a big cat) or in a baby seat.Sometimes Sampson slpees with his head on my shoulder and once he had it tucked under my chin! We also have a cat that currently slpees in a crib.

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