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UCR’s Show and Prove Hip Hop Studies Conference Explores the Diverse Culture of Hip Hop

The+official+flyer+for+the+2018+Show+%26+Prove+Hip+Hop+Studies+Conference+at+UCR.+This+year%27s+conference+took+place+December+7-9+
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UCR’s Show and Prove Hip Hop Studies Conference Explores the Diverse Culture of Hip Hop

The official flyer for the 2018 Show & Prove Hip Hop Studies Conference at UCR. This year's conference took place December 7-9

The official flyer for the 2018 Show & Prove Hip Hop Studies Conference at UCR. This year's conference took place December 7-9

The official flyer for the 2018 Show & Prove Hip Hop Studies Conference at UCR. This year's conference took place December 7-9

The official flyer for the 2018 Show & Prove Hip Hop Studies Conference at UCR. This year's conference took place December 7-9

Alijah Jenkins, Staff Writer, Web Designer

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Many associate Hip Hop by categorizing it into rap, fast pop, or a form of dance, but what if there is actually history behind this genre?

Saturday, December 8, 2018, marked the 4th biennial Show & Prove Hip Hop conference in downtown Riverside. The event, held by the University of Riverside’s own UCR ARTS program showcases the history and field of Hip Hop and cultivates an environment that represents the culture of Hip Hop worldwide.

The conference first began in New York in 2010, was halted briefly, and then started back up in Riverside. It is an open and free event that invites community members, scholars, and others to all educate and enjoy themselves in the presence of this genre. The conference offers a variety of performances, exhibits, screenings, workshops, and many other options to observe.

It is a three day event with multiple sessions ranging from the morning, afternoon, until evening time. Most cover different topics within the subject and feature guest speakers who specialize in dance or dance studies.

Nasir Marumo, alumni from Brown University, brought forth through his panel a discussion about what Hip Hop is representing in modern society. The panel was entitled, “The Rap Battle as Hustle: Questions of Social Uses.”

The general topic Marumo spoke upon was counter-hegemony; to define the way people develop ideas, beliefs and established patterns of behavior. One of the thoughts conveyed dealt with modern day rappers and what they are representing.

“These rappers are missing the point. They want to become superstars overnight, however, they are expressing themselves as if they already are. It is not what they are rapping about, although that dictates just as much, it is why they rap about these certain things. Everyone wants to be Tupac Shakur but for the glory and money, rather than passion and progress.”

On the topic of Performing Identity; Race, Gender, and Hip Hop culture, Peng Liu from UT Austin discusses her panel “Sounding Authentic to Whom?: Identity, Struggle, and Resistance in Asian American Rap Music.”

“Unbeknownst to many, Asian American Hip Pop is overlooked or often characterized as something it is not. I am here to represent my culture and say that asians can and do rap. It is not a limited talent,” Liu said.

Liu continued discussing the stereotypes and double-standards given to people because of the type of the idea of genre association.

The Show & Prove conference covers all aspects of the Hip Hop genre and explains all the ways it is practiced, respected, and celebrated.

Dr. Imani K. Johnson, conference founder, chair, and artistic director, who specializes in the department of dance studies, could not hold back the excitement in his voice discussing this meeting, as if it was the very first one.

“I was honored to have the opportunity to help take part in revitalizing this conference,” Johnson said. “Not only is it important to me, it is essential for the community to be given the tools and chance to educate themselves about something they may not have known prior- in this case- it’s Hip Hop. With that being said, we deeply welcome all to interact, discuss, share, critique and develop the field of Hip Hop Studies.”

About the Writer
Alijah Jenkins, Staff Writer, Web Designer

Alijah Jenkins, 17, is an ambitious, opinionated, intelligent, articulate, humorous, driven, and independent person. His interests include poetry and...

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UCR’s Show and Prove Hip Hop Studies Conference Explores the Diverse Culture of Hip Hop