Obari Cartman — Session II

Using hip-hop to address manhood, mental health, and culture with Black youth

Obari Cartman, PhD, H.E.L.P., LLC (Healing Empowering and Learning Professionals)

This workshop will use hip-hop to discuss the values, roles, expectation, struggles, and opportunities of manhood from a mental-health and African-centered perspective. We will watch, listen to, and read popular hip-hop songs and interrogate the messages they promote about masculinity, identity, and success. Workshop participants will be asked to engage with the music as critical consumers rather than passive recipients, to increase their ability to comprehend concepts embedded in the images and lyrics. Particular attention will be given to issues of sexism, Black culture, economic sustainability, fatherhood, power, and mass incarceration as factors impacting our concepts of masculinity. We will examine the themes typically included in corporate produced hip-hip compared to some of the themes in the music produced by more grassroots artists who make deliberate efforts to use the power of words to uplift and inspire.