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Think global, act local: How underground hip-hop gets down Down Under

Frederick W. Gooding, Matthew Brandel, Corbin Jountti, Andrew Shadwick, Bryantee Williams-Bailey


This article explicitly focuses upon the relationship Aboriginal Australia has with hip-hop culture.Hip-hop has become not only a tool for larger identity formation for Aboriginal Australians, but also a way to preserve traditional styles that historically wilt from outside mainstream influences. After conducting a brief analysis of historical, political, and cultural similarities and differences between the African American and Aboriginal Australian experience, four mini-profiles of Aboriginal Australian hip-hop artists help explore what American and Canadian cultural critic and scholar Henry Giroux (1999) terms “public pedagogy” for direct political action and influence among those marginalized from mainstream culture. The article concludes after teasing out the tension of how hip-hop asserts itself as a liberating force when created and communicated within constrained political environs that potentially dictate its true force and impact.

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Print ISSN 1177-1801 Online ISSN 1174-1740