Rapper Jay-Z has formed himself to be an artist, entrepreneur, icon, and now, the subject of a three-credit college course at Georgetown University. Entitled “Sociology of Hip Hop: Jay-Z”, the course will examine Jay-Z’s body of work and engage the students in critical analysis of the hip hop legend.
The fall-semester-only course is being taught by professor and author Michael Eric Dyson, who describes the course load as follows: “We look at his incredible body of work, we look at his own understanding of his work, we look at others who reflect upon him, and then we ask the students to engage in critical analysis of Jay-Z himself.”
The syllabus for the semester will include Jay-Z’s book Decoded as well as other books, films, and articles pertaining to the rapper and hip hop.
While university classes have frequently used hip hop has a subject of study – some even being taught by hip hop artists themselves – it is quite rare to find a course so intently focused on a single rapper, but it’s not hard to understand why.
“Well obviously Jay-Z is one of the greatest entertainers of the world today,” Dyson said. “Not only is he a remarkable rhetorical genius, he’s also a man of deep sympathy and empathy for those who are lost and vulnerable, but especially under-educated youth of all cultures and stripes.”
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