Scholar Michael Eric Dyson drops his academic knowledge to defense hip-hop, in which he believes “is one of the most authentic expressions of the black experience.” Dyson has a new book titled Know What I Mean? Reflections on Hip Hop coming out with an introduction written by Jay-Z:
At this point it might seem hollow to repeat what has been widely said about Michael Eric Dyson: this gifted man is the “hip hop intellectual,” a world-class scholar, and the most brilliant interpreter of hip hop culture we have. But plain and simple that is what he is. He has shown those doubters and critics that hip hop is a vital arts movement created by young working-class men and women of color. Yes, our rhymes can contain violence and hatred. Yes, our songs can detail the drug business and our choruses can bounce with lustful intent. However, those things did not spring from inferior imaginations or deficient morals; these things came from our lives. They came from America.