Essay On Catastrophe

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From Blues to Rap: The Catastrophe of Police Brutality Addressed in Today’s Music
African American centric music such as jazz, blues, funk, and rap is rich with resistance and perseverance against societal and political inequality. Self-proclaimed bluesman and American intellect. Cornel West defines blues as about “overcoming...prevailing...but it's tragic-comic, there’s no triumph...The Blues is about catastrophe.” Compared to Georgia State University Political Science professor Lakeyta M. Bonnette’s definition of political rap, blues seems to lack the proposition of a solution to catastrophe that is incorporated into her definition. Political rap is a cultural site that we can use to survey the attitudes of African Americans. In the light of recent public discourse of police brutality against black bodies and the #BlackLivesMatter movement, many hip hop artists use their music platform to bring awareness to these issues. In this paper, I will examine Black Nationalism in relation to the catastrophe that is police brutality in America addressed
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Cole talks about how he wanted his performance on Letterman to be authentic since he wrote “Be Free” from such a “crazy place.” He admits that in preparation for his performance he watched videos and articles about the police brutality against blacks. He had a fear of being inauthentic to his audience as seen when he says “ I don’t know if I can go back to that [crazy] place.” However, “once the song started, [he] got emotional” and that fear is replaced with the “crazy place” sentiment that transcends into his singing. With his eyes tightly shut, J. Cole shouts and groans like the blue’s West explained, the “language of catastrophe.” “Be Free” was J. Cole’s voice in the “language of catastrophe” as a angry, conscious, resistant black man, who is in essence like Michael
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