Obama in Ghana
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History 381 Ghana Project Report
Winter Break 2010
Political Power and Protest Through Ghana’s HipLife
1. Topic: I am studying the influence of Ghana’s ‘hiplife’ (the Ghanaian version of hip hop) on the political environment in Ghana, in particular during hiplifes’ upcoming in the 1980s.
2. Question(s): because I want to find out what/why/how Whose voice does ‘hiplife’ represent? Is this voice suppressed? If so, by who? What events/people have rebelled using hiplife as its avenue? How is does it relate to America’s hip-hop? Are theses rappers/musicians autonomous or controlled by political parties? What of hip-hop (either musically or culturally) have translated to Ghana? Based on record sales, what is hiplife’s impact on Ghana’s economy (commercial viability)? Does this sway political movements? Is hiplife a vehicle for political movements? What is the role of rappers/musicians in political protest? Are they viewed as political prophets? Do they yield significant power? What are the gender roles in hiplife and how does this affect political movement?
3. Significance: in order to help my reader understand how hiplife serves as a cultural mechanism of expression and action for the Ghanaian people, especially during times of political turmoil; in addition, to exploring the ways that the western version of hip-hop (particularly in the United States) influences the culture of Ghana.