John L. Jackson, Jr.
Richard Perry University Professor, Dean, School of Social Policy & Practice (SP2), University of Pennsylvania
This talk will try to invoke the very logic of conspiratorial thinking to map out some of hip-hop culture’s fascination with conspiracy theories linked to world global domination and racial hatred. It draws from current hip-hop artists and classic anthropological theory to lay out some of this pop-cultural terrain. The lecture will also make a related argument about the complicated role of love (especially a weaponized and self-destructive form of loving) in contemporary popular culture.
Dr. Jackson’s research examines racial and class-based differences in contemporary urban environments, including a focus on how urbanites themselves theorize and deploy those differences in everyday interactions. He is author of several books, including Impolite Conversations: On Race, Class, Sex, Religion, and Politics (co-written with Cora Daniels, 2014), and Thin Description: Ethnography and the African Hebrew Israelites of Jerusalem, 2013. He has also been involved—as producer, director, etc.—in the creation of several films, including Bad Friday: Rastafari After Coral Gardens (2010) and African-Americans and the Bible.