Month: March 2004

One memorable Memphis tour

Memphis tour was a success. Great fun. Moments to cherish. Civil Rights Museum. Blues of Handy and King. Neverland of Elvis. And most importantly, the railroad museum. Very educational. Very insightful. Deeply disturbing. And plain delightful. Well, the only thing that struck was that he hero-worshipping saga had left Robeson out. And the resentments against racism had simmered down. Part of the larger reality, though.

Radical Alternative Media

My proposed syllabus for a class on Radical Alternative Media: Media have often been depicted as part of the fourth estate in a democracy, the other three wings being the legislature, the executive and the judiciary. Role of the media, their representations of “social reality”, as well as biases in their reflections have often held center stage of public concern. But, on counts of content and the context, the bouquet and the brickbats, and the cultural as well as political-economic approaches, it is often the mainstream media, which get the attention. Either some television programs are portrayed as too violent, or few mainstream newspapers are cited as truly neutral. In either cases of extremes, the debate surrounds the media that are akin to big corporate organizations. They are the media that represent the focus and are widely circulated. Plausibly, the assumptions being that those media organizations are worth studying which have the reach. No wonder, most critical media theories actually surround the impacts of big business conglomerates in the political-economic tradition or negotiations within dominant …

Hip Hop Origins

Just compiling some information for a Harambee radio show being hosted by my good friend Jared. Hard work, but very interesing along the line of self-discoveries. Here are some definitions, uses and origins of Hip Hop, for the show. N.Y. Rocker 1982: Hip-hop DJ’s can repeat ever-shorter phrases, with a little nimble-fingered action on the rim or the label. N.Y. Times 1982: He [sc. D. J. Hollywood] phrased to the beat of a funk record and paced himself with a repeating refrain, usually a variation on the nonsense formula ‘hip, hop, hip-hip-de-hop’. Time 1983: This subculture, nicknamed hip hop, is about assertiveness, display, pride, status and competition, particularly among males. Clothes are not only a part of this offhand cultural statement; they are a kind of uniform for cultural challenge. People Weekly 1983: Born in the Bronx and Harlem in the mid-’70s as a reaction against disco, rap lays a hip-hopping patter of chanted, rhymed lyrics over a funk beat. Hip Hop 1984: Hip hop funky music suitable for rapping; a collective term used to …

Bollywood Actress get scribed

My review of an interesting subject I am working on currently: Not just the films themselves, the writings on the portrayal of women in popular Hindi films have too, long been dictated by assigning extremes—the woman’s prerogatives to belong to a side, of the evil or the virtuous, the vamp or the Madonna. Most authorship have evolved with historical representation of women in Bollywood to lead a discourse on the idealized women figures. Virdi (2003) justifies most studies as the “necessary first step” for providing a rich and abundant characterization of the idealized women figures: passive, victimized, sacrificial, submissive, glorified, static, one-dimensional, and resilient. And then, in her own work, she goes no further than the “first step”, by limiting to content-analysis of three films to study the women representation. Read the entire article here.