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BuildThe Power of Hip Hop Diplomacy in a Divided World$
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Mark Katz

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780190056117

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2019

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190056117.001.0001

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Build and Destroy: Hip Hop, US Diplomacy, and Islam

Build and Destroy: Hip Hop, US Diplomacy, and Islam

(p.139) Chapter 5 Build and Destroy: Hip Hop, US Diplomacy, and Islam

Mark Katz

Oxford University Press

This chapter focuses on how the State Department has deployed hip hop as a means to engage with global Muslim youth since 9/11. This engagement is revealed to reflect a broad US perspective on Islam, characterized by a mix of anxiety, curiosity, fetishism, and ignorance. The chapter explores how different Muslim hip hop artists view the relationship between their faith and their religion. The chapter concludes that hip hop diplomacy initiatives that focus on engaging Islam risk alienating Muslim participants and can generate resentment rather than good will. It is recommended that these programs focused on shared interests and not overemphasize religion.

Keywords:   Islam, Muslims, 9/11, Arab Spring, religion, Five Percent Nation

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