“This is JAY-Z’s America.”
Michael Eric Dyson is writing a book about Jay-Z and his cultural impact.
Entertainment Weekly reports, the professor and author will examine the evolution of his work and analyze his most famous lyrics and songs. The book is titled JAY-Z: Made In America and features a forward written by Pharrell.
“I thought this was the perfect time to take a look at JAY-Z’s career and his role in making this nation what it is today,” Dyson told Entertainment Weekly. “In many ways, this is JAY-Z’s America as much as it’s Obama’s America, or Trump’s America, or Martin Luther King’s America, or Nancy Pelosi’s America, or Maxine Waters’ America.”
Dyson added, “JAY-Z has given this country a language to think with and words to live by, and his lyrics have shaped the self-understanding of a culture that grapples with race and injustice and inequality every day. He’s an important thinker and artist, and my book tries to measure his impact and acknowledge his greatness.”
Dyson noted the book stemmed from a decade of teaching a Georgetown University course about the rapper, saying, “JAY-Z is not only a remarkable recording artist and ingenious businessman, but he is one of our most gifted wordsmiths whose language drips with all the poetic tricks and skills you’ll find in Walt Whitman, Robert Frost and Rita Dove. But as a rapper, he’s sometimes not given the credit he deserves for just how great an artist he’s been for so long.”
Jay-Z has been a recording artist for 30 years and recently became the first rap billionaire. Hw was also the first rap artist to be inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame.
JAY-Z: Made In America is available for pre-order now and is scheduled for release on November 26.
Ivie is a Nigerian-American, native New Yorker, and journalist covering culture. Usually on-air, on deadline, and on point. @ivieani