Hip Hop and Culture

In this class, we will trace the roots of rap music to West Africa rhythms, Jamaican sound systems, and oral expressive cultures in the American South; analyze some of the most influential and iconic rap recordings across the decades; study the techniques and technologies that are used to create DJ-based music; consider other pillars of hip hop culture (e.g. graffiti and break dancing); and examine the controversies that swirl around hip hop culture and rap music.

3 credits

Course Code: HUM 395

  • Founded by inventor, industrialist and philanthropist Peter Cooper in 1859, The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art offers education in art, architecture and engineering, as well as courses in the humanities and social sciences.

  • “My feelings, my desires, my hopes, embrace humanity throughout the world,” Peter Cooper proclaimed in a speech in 1853. He looked forward to a time when, “knowledge shall cover the earth as waters cover the great deep.”

  • From its beginnings, Cooper Union was a unique institution, dedicated to founder Peter Cooper's proposition that education is the key not only to personal prosperity but to civic virtue and harmony.

  • Peter Cooper wanted his graduates to acquire the technical mastery and entrepreneurial skills, enrich their intellects and spark their creativity, and develop a sense of social justice that would translate into action.