Filipino Essays Writers

Through the construction of whiteness and incorporation of various European immigrants into it, the dominant class divided the masses, prevented unity, and concealed the roots of exploitation.

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Hip-hop still remains a valuable musical form that can raise people’s consciousness of racism in this society, however.

Mainstream artists such as Ice Cube, Queen Latifah, and Jay-Z have produced songs that call attention to black-on-black crime and police brutality in America’s inner cities. David Roediger in his important book describes racism as “a large, low-hanging branch of a tree that is rooted in class relations.” He elaborates that “we must constantly remind ourselves that the branch is not the same as the roots, that people may more often bump into the branch than the roots, and that the best way to shake the roots may at times be by grabbing the branch.” Given the recent disaster that demolished New Orleans and the inability of government bodies to mobilize adequate resources to the people hit hardest by this catastrophe, it is more precise to describe race as the piercing blade and class relations as the spear. Without analyzing race and class as dialectically linked in the reproduction of capitalist relations, we are ill equipped to suture the deep cut that has afflicted so many people in New Orleans, Los Angeles, and other cities throughout the country.

Not only in order to grasp the structures of domination in their historical genesis and contradictory development which foreshadows their dissolution, but also in order to help constitute the true historical consciousness of the new social agency.

This essay is my attempt to write about Filipino American hip-hop from a historical materialist perspective with the deeper understanding that hip-hop is an art form that was created “for the people.” I begin with an analysis of hip-hop and its absorption into a culture of capitalism. Second, I claim that, for Filipino American hip-hop to effectively resist its co-optation, it must revive the anticapitalist and antiracist perspectives embodied in the cultural work Carlos Bulosan.

The music that dominates the top of the charts speaks to this shift, as icons such as Jay-Z, 50 Cent, and Lil’ Kim commonly describe themselves as business entrepreneurs, thereby associating themselves more closely with the white male business giants than with the people from their respective working-class communities of color.

Hip-hop’s absorption into a culture of capitalism is not an isolated occurrence but replicates the experience of many movements of the progressive left.

He says: Thus the emancipation of the oppressed is inconceivable without breaking and melting down the chains of this reified historical consciousness and without its positive counterpart: the reconstitution of the power of consciousness as a liberating force.

This is why historical materialism must be historical.

If you don’t, then you can suffer the consequences.”Examining the diverse historical forms of racism, a fluid ideology to preserve dominant class interests and to divide the working class, is crucial to understanding the history of Filipinos in the United States.

Bob Wing, in “Crossing Race and Nationality,” reminds us that, during the 1960s, the Asian-American movements “dramatically transformed the political consciousness and institutional infrastructure of the different Asian-American communities.” Among Filipino Americans, a critical consciousness of and opposition to alienation and racial oppression emerged decades earlier.


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