Published Dec 27, 2013Kanye West is an endless source of fascination these days, and we here at Exclaim! named the rapper the top newsmaker of 2013. Now, the self-proclaimed "Christian revolutionary visionary" is being examined with an academic textbook. The Cultural Impact of Kanye West, edited by Julius Bailey, is due out on March 6 through Palgrave Macmillan.
The 304-page hardcover book is currently available to pre-order from Amazon.
The official synopsis describes the book like this:
The ability of popular art to offer societal critiques and challenge received ideas has been recognized throughout history. Through rap and hip hop, composers, singers, and entertainers have recently provided a voice questioning and challenging the sanctioned view of the times. This book offers an in-depth reading of the works and cultural impact of Kanye West. Looking at the moral and social implications of West's words, images, and music in the broader context of Western civilization's preconceived ideas, the contributors consider how West both challenges religious and moral norms and propagates them.
Bailey is an assistant professor in the philosophy department at Wittenberg University in Springfield, OH. He's evidently got a bit of a penchant for analyzing rap within an academic context; he edited the 2011 book Jay-Z: Essays on Hip-Hop's Philosopher King, and he will release Philosophy and Hip Hop: Ruminations on Postmodern Cultural Form this summer.
Thanks to Consequence of Sound for the tip.