I missed this when it was on PBS, so it’s great to catch at least a bit of it on YouTube. Here’s the description:
“Hip-Hop: Beyond Beats & Rhymes” provides a riveting examination of manhood, sexism, and homophobia in hip-hop culture. Director Byron Hurt, former star college quarterback, longtime hip-hop fan, and gender violence prevention educator, conceived the documentary as a “loving critique” of a number of disturbing trends in the world of rap music. He pays tribute to hip-hop while challenging the rap music industry to take responsibility for glamorizing destructive, deeply conservative stereotypes of manhood. The documentary features revealing interviews about masculinity and sexism with rappers such as Mos Def, Fat Joe, Chuck D, Jadakiss, and Busta Rhymes, hip-hop mogul Russell Simmons, and cultural commentators such as Michael Eric Dyson and Beverly Guy-Shetfall. Critically acclaimed for its fearless engagement with issues of race, gender violence, and the corporate exploitation of youth culture.
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Cat-Call & Response – The basic repertoire for any GPA consists of seven approaches:
The Staredown – Basic eye contact. Direct and aggressive.
The Stare and Pucker – Add a scrunched-up face with puckered lips.
The Stare and Kiss – Now add kissing noises to the pucker.
The Stare and Hiss – Now switch to hissing sounds, alternating with kissing.
The Religious Proclamation – “Praise Jesus girl, you are fine!”
The Conversation/Block Escort – “Can I talk with you mami …”. Must engage for full length of block HQ.
The Loud Conversation with a Friend – “YO RICKY, do you see this girl over here? Yeah, the pretty one that’s walking all fast. You think I should talk to her?”
…There Is One Tip: If you’re in the mood for being holla’d at, then just relax and let the GPAs do their thing. If you DO NOT wish to be approached, then you are advised to remove your makeup, hair, lips, eyelashes, breasts, and buttocks. Basically look as much like a man as possible. Do not use lotion, lip-gloss, Vaseline, or anything that reflects light. A burlap sack or garbage-bag poncho to cover your body helps, as long as it’s not actually raining, in which case the raindrops that fall on your exposed elbows will glisten far too much to feel secure in your undesirability.
I just read about this new comic strip called Single Asian Female on Angry Asian Man.
It’s actually written by a man named Ethan Lee, but the protagonist is a 21 year-old fourth-generation Chinese American who goes to UC Berkeley. Check out this AsianWeek article about Lee and check out the comic strip’s web site.
I’m kind of disappointed that it’s not actually written by a woman. I don’t necessarily think there’s anything wrong with writing a comic from a perspective that’s not your own, but as we know there are a lot of really dicey gender issues in the Asian-American community, and I guess I just hope that this comic will try to be as realistic and balanced as possible.
Update: Check out Jenn’s take on it at Reappropriate. I’m willing to give this comic benefit of the doubt since it’s just starting out, but I agree with this statement from Jenn: “With Asian American feminism in its nascency, we must be careful about the voices that are perceived to define our identity and voice our narrative.” If you enjoyed this post, get free updates by email or RSS!