Hip Hop, By Maya Angelou Essay

1432 WordsSep 28, 20166 Pages
Mos Def’s “Hip-Hop” and Maya Angelou’s “Africa”: Identities That Have Been Exploited Many people find identity in their culture, art and literature. Both in Maya Angelou’s “Africa” and Mos Def’s “Hip-Hop” both have themes of identity and exploitation. Both show that the black experience in the Americas and mostly all over the world is based on being the one’s who are exploited. Both poems have to do with one’s identity or autonomy being stolen from them. They do differ when it comes to the genre and the context but they do share the themes of identity and exploitation. Angelou in her poem uses the examples of the slave trade and using a women to convey two different means of exploitation. Her poem can even connect towards today, where Africa is still being exploited for its natural resources. Def’s song has to do with mainly a commentary of hip-hop as a genre and a culture. This song jam packs a myriad of subject matters such as history, progression, warnings, friendship, perfection, and identity. Def in a song that should seem like a celebration for hip-hop, instead criticizes it for it’s exploitive nature. In both poems you could get to hear the voice of the exploited. Agelou in “Africa” seems to be describing a women writing, “Thus she lain. Sugar cane sweet”. The first two lines could imply that women are sweet. However, this could refer the to the slave trade. Rum being the main form of currency that the Spanish and Portuguese would trade for. They would

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