“Trash Music: Class and Strategic Whiteness in Bro-Country and Country-Rap”
Hannah Noel, Assistant Professor of Multiethnic Studies & the Digital Humanities
Wednesday, April 1st, 12pm
Location: Murdock 218
Using the video sharing app TikTok, black country-rap artist Lil Nas X created a meme out of his song “Old Town Road” that helped catapult it to three of Billboard’s charts: Hot 100, Hot Country, and Hot R&B/Hip-Hop. Using this historical moment as a touchpoint, this presentation studies the rhetoric of contemporary country songs and the online fan community of bro-country, country-rap, and hick-hop music. As a common theme in country music, a discussion of what is or what is not “country” references a musical genre, racialized geography, social class, and way of life. Although much has been written about country music, there are markedly few publications on contemporary country music and hick-hop. The research builds on current country music scholarship through foregrounding the ways that fan communities police and interpret lyrics and star personas in mediated spaces.
Hannah Noel is Assistant Professor of Multiethnic Studies and the Digital Humanities at MCLA. She holds a Ph.D. in American Culture from the University of Michigan. The research presented at this colloquium is part of her monograph, Deflective Whiteness: White Identity Politics in a Post-Race Era, under contract with The Ohio State University Press for inclusion in their Race and Mediated Cultures Series.
In the Spring Colloquium 2020 lecture series, MCLA faculty members from across campus share their current research or creative projects and benefit from questions and discussions. Events are free & open to the public. Refreshments will be served.