Linguistic techniques of the self: The intertextual language of racial empowerment in politically conscious Brazilian hip hop

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

10 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This article describes the bodily aesthetics, patterns of consumption, and daily linguistic practices undertaken by hip-hop affiliated youth in Rio de Janeiro in the late 1990s. I argue that through their participation in politically conscious hip hop, poor male Brazilian youth attempt to racially transform their bodies into a form of 'modern blackness.' I focus, in particular, on the quoting of rap lyrics in daily conversation, a linguistic practice that offers audible evidence of one's consumption of hip hop style. I suggest that linguistic strategies of racial empowerment constitute forms of 'techniques of the self' that allow speakers to manage the racial appearance of the body through an avoidance of the traits that are negatively associated with blackness in Brazil.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)36-47
Number of pages12
JournalLanguage and Communication
Volume32
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2012

Fingerprint

Humulus
hip hop
Linguistics
Hip
empowerment
Language
linguistics
language
rap
Esthetics
Brazil
aesthetics
conversation
participation
evidence
Power (Psychology)
Hip-hop
Intertextual
Conscious
Empowerment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Social Psychology
  • Linguistics and Language
  • Communication

Cite this

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