This courses introduces students to the varieties of humanisms in hip-hop culture and asks the question, “What can hip-hop teach humanists about the evolving nature and dimensions of humanism among marginal communities today?” Topics of exploration include: the history of Black Humanism and the role of cultural production, suffering and creativity, the varying humanisms in hip hop culture, and a consideration of the humanism within New Black Gods of hip-hop today.
by Dr. Monica R. Miller
Dr. Monica R. Miller is Assistant Professor of Religion & Africana Studies and Director of Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at Lehigh University. Miller holds research interests in changing dimensions of religion in the U.S., youth cultures and subcultures, popular culture, identity and difference, and new black religious movements. Her work has been featured in a host of regional and national print, radio, and TV news outlets including NPR, The Washington Post, The Oregonian, The Root, Left of Black, and Huffington Post Live. She has presented her research at colleges, universities, and conferences throughout the U.S., Cuba, Canada and various parts of Europe. Among other publications, she is the author of Religion and Hip Hop (Routledge), The Hip Hop and Religion Reader (Routledge) with Dr. Anthony B. Pinn, Religion in Hip Hop: Mapping the New Terrain in the US (Bloomsbury) with Dr. Pinn and rapper Bernard “Bun B” Freeman, editor of the forthcoming volume, Claiming Identity in the Study of Religion: Social and Rhetorical Techniques Examined and co-editor of Codes of Conduct: Code Switching and the Everyday Performance of Identity (with Dr. K. Merinda Simmons) with Equinox Press. Miller is a Senior Research Fellow with The Institute for Humanist Studies (IHS), Associate Editor of The Journal of Hip Hop Studies, Co-Founder, prior Co-Chair, and Steering Committee Member of ‘Critical Approaches to the Study of Religion and Hip Hop Culture’ (AAR), member of the international scholarly collective, Culture on the Edge, contributing editor at Marginalia (A LA Review of Books Channel), editorial board member of Culture on the Edge: Studies in Identity Formation book series with Equinox Press, and advisory board member of the Race and Rights Group at The University of Nottingham in the UK.