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Inaugural European Hip-Hop Studies Network Meeting

“Hip-hop is the people”:

Inaugural European Hip-Hop Studies Network Meeting

8-9 March 2018

TU Dortmund, IBZ, Emil-Figge-Str. 59, 44227 Dortmund


Hip Hop Network Meeting Image

Founding Fathers. Foto: privat.


About the Event:

The Department of American Studies at TU Dortmund University will host the “Inaugural Meeting of the European Hip-Hop Studies Network” at the IBZ/International Meeting Center from March 8-9, 2018. Hip-hop studies in Europe is an exciting, fluid, and interdisciplinary field which has grown immensely since the 1990s. Book publications, research projects and conferences affirm that the study of hip-hop culture has become a central part at European universities, academic curricula, and researchers’ careers. However, despite these prospects, the hip-hop studies communities across Europe, although they are loosely connected through personal relationships, social media activities, regional networks, and collaborative publications, they oftentimes lack larger transnational, pan-European, and - perhaps most importantly – financially sustainable networks.

The creation of a pan-European transnational hip-hop studies network aims to close this gap by bringing together individual researchers and research communities and by exploring what such a network might look like, how it can be organized and funded, and how it can help to initiate transnational research projects. Entitled “[h]ip-hop is the people,” a statement voiced by American hip-hop and R&B singer Erykah Badu, the inaugural meeting aims to strengthen the dialogue and collaboration between hip-hop researchers across Europe.

This inaugural meeting is inspired by the longstanding research and teaching focus at the American Studies Department in the field of hip-hop studies. Researchers promote hip-hop culture as an important field of investigation in American and Cultural Studies. They also highlight its central role as a medium of self-empowerment in many students’ lives because hip-hop addresses experiences of migration, social justice, participation, and cultural innovation. In 2010, staff members organized the first hip-hop conference in the Ruhr Area, “Hip-Hop im Revier”, which provided an important impetus for the edited volume Hip-Hop in Europe: Cultural Identities and Transnational Flows (Nitzsche/Grünzweig, 2013). Since then, students have explored hip-hop related topics in seminars, research groups, bachelors’ and masters’ theses. Local and international artists and activist speakers, such as Aphroe, Bocafloja, Mikal Lee, Poetic Pilgrimage, Schlakks, and MC Sole & DJ Pain1, have also shared their insights on the role of hip-hop culture in a variety of guest lectures, artist talks, panel discussions, and at the first “Hip-Hop Education Week” which took place in summer 2017. Cooperation and collaboration with artists and practitioners is therefore a guiding principle of doing hip-hop studies in Dortmund.

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Christina Bakaj

Frida Buiter

Mina Faizy

Tanja Ferreira

Sina Nitzsche

Türel Tan

Christine Vennemann