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Jay-Z Is The Subject Of Course At Georgetown University

| Filed under: JAY-Z

Jay-Z college class

Jay-Z officially has it all. He's got his own basketball team, record label, clothing line, superstar wife, 99 problems, and now, a class at Georgetown University dedicated to his life story!

This semester, students are studying the social commentary behind his lyrics at the Washington D.C. campus in a class called Sociology of Hip-Hop: Jay-Z.

Michael Eric Dyson, a professor who has also taught classes about music icons Tupac and Marvin Gaye, believes that the rapper's work as a basis is the perfect way to study sociological issues including racial and gender identity, sexuality, capitalism and economic inequality in America.

In fact, Dyson thinks Jay-Z, who started his life in a poor Brooklyn housing project and is now a multimillionaire, is "an icon of American excellence."

Not everyone in the academic community agrees that Jay-Z is worthy of becoming course material.

Stephen Wu, a Junior at the school, dismissed the class as "poppycock" in an opinion piece published in a student newspaper, reading:

"It speaks volumes that we engage in the beat of Carter's pseudo-music while we scrounge to find serious academic offerings on Beethoven and Liszt. We dissect the lyrics of Big Pimpin', but we don't read Spenser or Sophocles closely."

Good point. However, the class sounds like more fun than Western Religions or Advanced Calculus in our opinion! LOLz!

Would U enroll in a college course centered around the life of a musician or other pop culture icon?

[Image via WENN.]

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23 comments to “Jay-Z Is The Subject Of Course At Georgetown University”

  1. 1

    First :p Jay- Z is a successful man in all areas but very ugly if Beyonce is really prego I hope that the kid looks like her his teeth a a story of its won. Yes I would go to that school if I wanted to be in the music industry everything that the men produced turned out to be a hit.

  2. 2

    It's no one's fault that they don't study Sophocles.

  3. 3

    Many of the attacks on Wu begin with an ad hominem, "you're racist" which makes easier the next "point" the people criticizing this article generally make.
    Interestingly enough, soon after labeling Wu a racist (with no basis for such an assertion other than this article) they engage in race separation points, such as "black people are marginalized" and "this is criticizing black music so it's racist" and the like. Essentially those points boil down to a simple statement, "don't criticize black people or you is racisssss" The point Wu makes is not actually addressed except in passing.
    Many others claim that Jay-Z is an example because he pulled himself up from nothing, etc. By doing what exactly? Pandering to the most base of human instincts, which all rap music does nowadays…immediate sexual gratification. Sure there are probably some "songs" (if a spoken set of lines can be considered a song) that offer some sophomoric reflections on whatever plight-du-jour his group might be experiencing, but these are not the songs shawn carter popularizes and are filler for the album, akin to the rest of the songs that no one but "hardcore fans" (how little respect must one have for oneself to refer to oneself as a hardcore fan?) listen to.

  4. 4

    This person's lyrics promote instant base gratification, violence, disrespect for social contracts, and mask it with a self-inflicted plight plea. He helps corrupts society and reaps the rewards that can be had from appealing to such lowest-common denominator instincts. It is parasitic because it does not contribute a net positive. A similar view would be saying that a drug dealer contributes to society because he became rich and his antics helped employ police officers, social workers, parole officers, judges, etc. Perhaps…but at what social cost? Keep in mind shawn carter is a man who shot his own brother over a stolen ring. The fact that he made money seems to wash away this horrendous example of a human being.
    It is sad that a "professor" (the guy teaching this is considered a joke within Academia, by the way. Think of him as the opposite of Cornel West) at Georgetown is allowed to pollute and prey on susceptible-to-trends young minds. But I suppose that, just like a fool and his money being parted, a fool and his time can be as well.

  5. 5

    They should pay special attention to the episodes where Urkel takes the "Cool Juice"!

  6. bbcb says – reply to this


    Is that Eddy Murphy in disguise for his next role?

  7. bbcb says – reply to this


    oops sorry is it Eddie or Eddy. My bad.

  8. 8

    "Tell me who your friends are and I'll tell you who you are"-proverb

    "He's a jackass"-Barack Obama, on shawn carter's bff, kanye west

  9. 9

    Holyyyyyyyyyyy shit, what a waste of tuition, time and staff. You are a complete moron if you take this "course".

  10. 10

    The student who commented is an idiot. He sounds like a grouchy white man in his 50's. Jay Z's music and lyrics is definitely a great social commentary and, if taught by the right person, could prove valuable academically.

  11. Uruha says – reply to this


    Re: Anabella Smart – I agree. He's a cool dude but um…he's ugly. Too bad.

    Also, why the hell does he look like a wax sculpture of himself in this photo? Is this from the wax museum? What the eff.

    Don't care about the course honestly. Private universities are always teaching BS.

  12. 12


  13. 13

    Re: Brains of the Operation – Yeah like continuing to teach men how to disrespect women and their mothers by calling them B's and hoes. Class should be a real eye opener on how to sell drugs as well.

  14. 14

    I would have to pass on this course as it seems ignorant.

  15. 15

    Ostentatious….You know, I'd like to hear the social commentary and the social cultural analysis on his "Big Pimpin'" track, among others. Really - you know, I'd LOVE to hear someone break that down for me because you DO NOT need to take a course on the laws of hip-hop culture to tell you what you already know about it-a story to tell from a struggling, hustling druggdealin yungun, his lungs invested in Cannabis culture, still a "nobody" yet rhyming about selfproclaimed to be the best, fame, enemies, an unparalleled lifestyle of excess, splurging on eazy women and supreme world domination -also known as grandures of illusions. Moral of the story - ball hard, mothafuckas ARE trying to find you, and, that shit and THIS COURSE are really craaa(z)y.

  16. 16

    Re: ChopChop69
    " A similar view would be saying that a drug dealer contributes to society because he became rich and his antics helped employ police officers, social workers, parole officers, judges, etc. " …..
    . . . . . . . . . .
    Excellent point …..

  17. 17

    is there any glass in the nerd frames? Hilarious

  18. 18

    Steven Wu's point makes absolutely ridiculous and made no sense whatsoever given the fact that in America, we have the freedom to choose the classes we wish to participate in when we enroll.We have options. If students wish to study Sophocles, they have the option of enrolling in such classes. I studied Sophocles in college in Philosophy. This course on Jay-Z is most likely an elective. It seems people criticize things just to criticize these days. Don't take the Jay Z course if you don't like it. Simple as that.

  19. 19

    The course will also include history on the Illuminati and how it relates to the present world today.

  20. 20

    Only at Brown. The class should have been titled, "How to become rich and famous by peddling complete garbage to your own people". Some asshole at Brown is obviously kissing some serious ass or he gave a donation in order to have a class like this. Makes him look legit, when he's not. He's a complete fraud. Wake up.

  21. 21

    About as educational as basket weaving 101. Remind me not to hire Brown graduates, ever.

  22. 22

    That sounds like an awesome course.

  23. 23

    can we say..ILLUMINATI.