Home > Thoughts > Love for Paradox; Love for HIP-HOP

Love for Paradox; Love for HIP-HOP

I was once a V8 drinking smoker, a Texas figure skater, a cowboy boot wearing hippie, a shy salesperson, a red meat eating Prius driver, an IT socialite, and now a middle-class suburban HIP-HOP fan.  I am a Paradox.  What is a paradox? A paradox is a statement that is seemingly contradictory or opposed to common sense and yet is true.  I’ve spent my life negotiating the disparity between my personality, compensating for the fear that I am perceived as a poser, striving to prove that I am honest until today.  Today finally I am honest with myself as I embrace my paradox and I embrace my inner HIP-HOP. Haters, listen up.  The times they are a changin’..

Let it burn.  A new en-LIGHT-enment is beginning in HIP-HOP, paralleling the universality of technology.  Let it burn.  HIP-HOP is a culture born of society’s uneducated that fed on knowledge, society’s starving that have provided jobs and sustenance to their neighborhoods, society’s resource-less that overcame adversity.  The accomplishments of the HIP-HOP community are art and paradoxes in and of themselves and finally the culture is gaining momentum as it is reborn for the hundredth time.

Following the release of Kanye’s Runaway, there is backlash from haters as often follows Kanye’s beaconing ego.  I’m guilty of my own Kanye hatership, but that ship has sailed.  As I read recently on a fellow blog, the new hate is love.  Lame-ist attitudes are like totally last year kids.  The backlash is often a result of an artist’s ability to have vision beyond his/her canvas, outline, or genre.  In short, Kanye is different; he is a Paradox, incongruous to the rappers and the musicians prior to him, thus his credibility is shamed by the masses.  Leaders, a smaller percentage of the population, work hard to slowly bring haters over until the art is accepted and considered popular.  True artistry culminates at that moment when forever the world’s barometer of appreciation has been re-calibrated.  The paradox? The leader is never the popular and the popular is never the leader.  He is the ultimate ironic paradox, fitting for one of the ultimate kings of HIP-HOP. Loved as much as he is hated, hated as much as he is loved, Kanye West is an artist, a leader, and yet he is popular.

Kanye West is an outlandish Phoenix (see Runaway)–A bird too big for contemporary society, but destined to be remembered and statued (yes I made it up) for future generations–generations that are already catching on that it is the unpopular that soon warrants popularity. Grassroots artists are gaining popularity as hatership fades into the dark past of previous generations and the new generation thrives on embracing connections and community social endeavors (see Facebook).  The lessons of HIP-HOP are spreading to the masses, defying its roots of locality.  The movement will be protested by all sides, but in the end HIP-HOP is a Paradox; I am a Paradox and I am HIP-HOP.  Maybe you, too, have recognized the complexity of your own growth? You are a Paradox and You are HIP-HOP.

This post was inspired by an anonymous and very insightful employee of EMC that I am happy to have begun working with during my first few months at SwervePoint.

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  1. Beth M
    11/01/2010 at 2:12 am

    This is good post, because I think paradox is more something our current generation wrestles with a lot more than our parents/grandparents. We have to be more things to more people, and more publicly too (re:facebook), smart, connected, socially conscious, but at the same time, silly too. Especially women, I think are being pulled apart into more paradoxes too, as a lot of old roles become passe and useless. Anyway, keep up the good work.

  2. workingreekgirl
    11/03/2010 at 5:03 am

    THANK YOU BETH! How was your trip?

    You are so right about our generation. I remember learning that Western thought is more binary and so it creates opportunity for contradiction as opposed to Eastern thought is more contextual. I try to remind myself of that when I feel frustrated trying to be everything to everyone. And you are especially right about women, we told to be one way and conditioned to be another—what a foundation for a feeling of inadequacy.

    Thank you again Beth! I hope everything is well! I’m sure you are still glowing! So happy for you!

    Hope to see you some time!

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