Hip-hop as survivor testimony? Rhymes as critical text? Drawing on her own experiences as a lifelong hip-hop head and philosophy professor, Lissa Skitolsky reveals the existential power of hip-hop to affect our sensibility and understanding of race and anti-black racism. Hip-Hop as Philosophical Text and Testimony: Can I Get a Witness? examines how the exclusion of hip-hop from academic discourse around knowledge, racism, white supremacy, genocide, white nationalism, and trauma reflects the very neoliberal sensibility that hip-hop exposes and opposes. At this critical moment in history, in the midst of a long overdue global reckoning with systemic anti-black racism, Skitolsky shows how it is more important than ever for white people to realize that our failure to see this system-and take hip-hop seriously-has been essential to its reproduction. In this book, she illustrates the unique power of underground hip-hop to interrupt our neoliberal and post-racial sensibility of current events.
Introduction: It's Bigger Than Hip-Hop
Chapter One: Know What I'm Sayin?
Chapter Two: Can I Get a Witness?
Chapter Three: Claimin I'm a Criminal
Chapter Four: But You Don't Hear Me Tho
Chapter Five: You Feel Me?
Chapter Six: Fuck Tha Police
Conclusion: The Aesthetic Politics of Underground Hip-Hop
Playlist by Chapter