Hip-hop, hip-life: Global sistahs
Jabbaar-Gyambrah, Tara (Ama Sika) Aminah
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This study examines African American and Ghanaian women's roles and representations in two musical forms, hip-hop and hip-life. Through a deepened analysis it looks at the history of hip-hop which started in South Bronx, New York and hip-life in Accra, Ghana. Within this framework it builds on transcultural influences and antecedents such as Double Dutch, jazz, soul rapping, blues, highlife, and gospel music that gave African American and Ghanaian women a foundation by which to resist multiple oppressions. Specifically, in Chapters One and Four I map out their roles through a theory that they are constantly shifting between ''invisible'' and ''visible'' spaces within the hip-hop and hip-life music industry. An overlapping theme within both chapters is the way in which locality assisted in the formation of the music genres. The entire framework of the dissertation builds on themes of resistance, gender, and a legacy of place. Integrated within the text are theories used but not limited to feminist/womanist, Deconstruct-Reconstruct-Construct (DRC), ethnomusicology studies, and ''transcultural global moment.'' The methodological background is supported by the use of qualitative design inclusive of individual interviews, participant observation, ethnography, data collection, audio, video, subject, and cultural analyses. Through the examination of the similarities and differences between African American women in hip-hop and Ghanaian women in hip-life I argue that women's roles in these industries are connected through resistance, socio-cultural historical experiences, and the traveling of culture/ideologies through spaces in time.