Jay Z on Hip-Hop and Its Role in Race Relations

Hip-hop culture has curated vivid verbal imagery of society- the good, bad and ugly. The rap music it spawned was harsh, witty, and for most, mirrored our community’s day-to-day. In its essence, it also illustrated a sense of unity, being that music is a universal language.

Run-ins with the law are documented. Boasts abounded and you better believe, racist encounters with police are lyrical staples, for example, the entire second verse of Jay Z’s “99 problems.”

So to think that hip-hop has a place, and plays a role in, the evolution of race relations, you’d be on the right path.

Mogul and businessman Jay Z would even take hip-hop’s influence on the subject even further, stating in a recent episode of Oprah’s Masterclass, that “Hip-hop has done more for race relations than most cultural icons.”

Among his gems: Yes, while people of various races may come together over an N.W.A. track or even a Jay-Z record, there’s still no guarantee that racism becomes non-existent just because a black and white person enjoy the same song.

Check out the clip below for a fuller understanding and share your thoughts in comments.