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Deconstructing Tyrone: A New Look at Black Masculinity in the Hip-Hop Generation
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Deconstructing Tyrone: A New Look at Black Masculinity in the Hip-Hop Generation

by Natalie Hopkinson, Natalie Y. Moore
 

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Two smart Black women break the Tyrone code — with affection, with respect, but with no illusions. Black men as fathers, sons, teachers, lovers, rap stars, professionals, fantasy objects, and cultural constructs — a multifaceted picture of American Black men today.

You know Tyrone. Smooth-talking, irresistible Tyrone — the swagger in his step, the

Overview

Two smart Black women break the Tyrone code — with affection, with respect, but with no illusions. Black men as fathers, sons, teachers, lovers, rap stars, professionals, fantasy objects, and cultural constructs — a multifaceted picture of American Black men today.

You know Tyrone. Smooth-talking, irresistible Tyrone — the swagger in his step, the sexy drawl, the poetry and rhythm in his essence — the militant revolutionary of the 1960s evolved into the pimp/thug of the hip-hop era. Tyrone is the Black man seen through the media lens, through stereotype, through the eyes of Black women. He’s "Talk Show Tyrone," all muscle and defiance, “an archetype converted to a hit single.”

In Deconstructing Tyrone, the authors, journalists Natalie Y. Moore and Natalie Hopkinson, examine Black masculinity from a variety of perspectives, looking not for consensus but for insight. With chapters on Detroit mayor Kwame Kilpatrick, on the complicated relationship between women and hip-hop, on babydaddies, on gay Black men on and off the down low, on strippers and their fathers, on Black men in the office, at school, and in jail, Deconstructing Tyrone presents a multifaceted picture of American Black men now.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
In this series of 11 essays, journalists Hopkinson and Moore probe black male archetypes of the hip-hop generation, but the Howard University grads' superficial application of Jacques Derrida's "deconstruction theory" limits the impact of their effort. ("Tyrone," the everyman moniker in Erykah Badu's 1997 female anthem, is the authors' cultural catchall for these black men.) Written in cheeky, intellectual-yet-down vernacular, the strongest chapters deliver convention-bending twists on familiar types. They introduce Etan Thomas, an erudite basketball player with a taste for politics; hypermasculine showboat Kwame Kilpatrick, not pimping in a rap video but leaning back in Detroit's mayoral mansion; and a gay couple restoring their well-appointed Victorian home while the kids are away at camp. But too often, trendy cultural arguments and the minutiae of each subject's life eclipse deeper analysis. The essay on Kwame Kilpatrick is less about unveling meanings buried in media and public perceptions than evaluating his uneven mayoral record. Essays like "Babydaddy" and "Tyrones in Training" complicate boilerplate images of young, hip-hop-loving black men, but rely exclusively on the views of babymamas and teen girls. Hopkinson and Moore offer snap shots of alternative black masculinities, but don't really break new ground. (Dec.) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781573442572
Publisher:
Cleis Press
Publication date:
10/28/2006
Pages:
246
Sales rank:
949,378
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 7.90(h) x 0.90(d)

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