Art, Music, & Pop Culture: watch-listen

The role of artists in society has always been important. Artists raise awareness about social issues and are often the register of the times. They can reinforce the status quo or they can serve as a catalyst for change. Popular Culture often illuminates where we are all are as a people and a species. We invite critical essays and thinking on art of all types today in the US and abroad.

Using Rap to Teach (Fresh Prep)

Using Rap to Teach (Fresh Prep)

Fresh Prep is an innovative student-centered curriculum that uses Hip-Hop music to help students review the key content and skills tested on the New York State Regents Exams. Harnessing the appeal and mnemonic power of music and youth culture, Fresh … Continue reading

Michael Jackson visits Africa 1992


In February of 1992, Michael Jackson made an 11 day visit to Africa. On arrival, he was greeted by grade-school students in Gabon, West Africa, who carried a banner that proclaimed: “Welcome Home Michael”. By the time he left, he … Continue reading

August Wilson on Blackness

august Wilson on Blackness

Pulitzer Prize- winning playwright, August Wilson, on blackness and how his characters find nobility in struggle.

Poet Amiri Baraka


Poet and political agitator Amiri Baraka talks about his work and his activism in a 1999 interview with Bill Moyers.

Africa Speaks, America Answers

frica Speaks

Robin Kelley explains how modern Africa reshaped jazz, how modern jazz helped form a new African identity, and how musical convergences and crossings altered the politics and culture of both continents.

A Conversation With Poet Nikky Finney

public radio exchange

Listen to a conversation between Nikky Finney and Ross Gay that touches on topics such as mentorship, Finney’s writing process, her childhood, and more. Listen here.

Tom Morello on Music for a Movement

music for a movement

“In this 2012 Moyers Moment from Moyers & Company, songwriter Tom Morello — known as the guitarist for the band Rage Against the Machine, and more recently as a solo performer under the name “The Nightwatchman” — discusses the role … Continue reading

A Young Poet from The Bronx

poet bronx

Haydil Henriquez, a young Latina poet growing up in the Bronx, talks about how poetry continues to shape her life and reads from her poem, Bronx.  

Why is We Americans

hy is we americans

Amiri Baraka in Season 1, Episode 4 of Def Poetry Jam.

Wynton Marsalis on 60 Minutes

ynton marsalis

Wynton Marsalis takes his Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra around the world. Morley Safer tags along as Marsalis and his musicians make the scene in London and then go to Havana for a Afro-Cuban musical treat. )