HipHop, Youth Culture, and Politics in Senegal

You are here

FIG 19
Damon Sajnani
HipHop, Youth Culture, and Politics in Senegal
Seminar 1, 4:00–5:15 MW
Africa: An Introductory Survey
Lecture 1, 9:30–10:45 TR; Discussion 303, 3:30–4:20 T
First Semester Wolof
Lecture 1, 11:00–11:50 MTWRF

This FIG introduces students to the study of contemporary Africa through a focus on Senegalese HipHop youth culture, and language. It is designed for students interested in youth culture, international studies, and issues of development, democracy, globalization, and social justice. It is also geared to those who enjoy learning about overseas cultures, especially those interested in doing research or volunteer work in Africa. This FIG provides students with 12 credits towards the 15 credits needed for a certificate in African Studies.

This main seminar course, African Languages & Literature 220: “HipHop, Youth Culture, and Politics in Senegal,” explores how African-American hip-hop culture is adopted and adapted by youth in Africa to create a global “cultural citizenship” and fight for social justice and democracy in their local context. Beginning with the history, culture, and politics of HipHop in the United States, this course compares and contrasts HipHop’s development in Senegal. You will develop a familiarity with youth culture and politics in Senegal and study the ongoing process of cross-cultural flows and hybridity. The course will engage debates concerning globalization and democracy, international political economy, culture industries and transnational cultural studies.

The other two courses of the FIG will enhance your understanding of these topics by providing a broad introduction to the history and geography of Africa and to one of the main languages spoken in West Africa.   

History 277: “Africa: An Introductory Survey” — This course is a multidisciplinary introduction to the cultures and history of Africa. The course visits almost every major region of the continent and explores a variety of themes and topics. The class offers students not only an understanding of what to think about the history, cultures, and politics of Africa but also how to think about this part of the world. The major themes of this course will be examined in greater detail in the FIG’s main course as they relate to Senegal and West Africa.

African Languages & Literature 391: “First Semester Wolof” — This introductory course in Wolof provides the basics of communication in Senegal’s most widely spoken language. You will be well equipped for study abroad or volunteer work in Senegal. These new language skills will also help you understand and appreciate Senegalese music, videos, and rap lyrics.