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Women in Hip Hop

Indy Hunjan selected as member of Womanhood Learning Project (WLP).

Year of the Hip-Hop Women Officially Began March 2008! New York, NY – The Hip-Hop Association [H2A], in conjunction with Social Services of Hip-Hop, We B*Girlz, Where My Ladies at? Interactive Film, and We Got Issues! embark on a mission to restore and revive the Hip-Hop Woman through the Womanhood Learning Project (WLP).

The WLP explores women’s roles and leadership positions in different sectors within Hip-Hop culture and the community, while examining the negative media factors and power struggle that hinder the growth and awareness of these women, as well as how these factors impact the youth, especially young girls. The WLP is intended to bring unity among women in Hip-Hop by creating a space to learn, build, and bring about concrete change through a yearlong campaign that will include a case study, workshops, lecture series, a resource book, and an online community.

Powerful, intelligent, self -respecting women in Hip-Hop do exist. They’re on the microphone, off-camera, and behind the scenes holding weighty positions at the top of the industry’s professional food chain. Yet many remain silently tucked away as anonymous, shining stars, because of the lack of media exposure, male-centric programming, and adverse images that show a one-sided perspective of women in Hip-Hop. These women need a worldwide blow horn that will acknowledge, motivate and remind the globe that there are some who have maneuvered within the sexist system that exist and became successful.

Through the Womanhood Learning Project, the H2A and its partners will explore ways in which it can study and promote these invisible women, and provide tools and resource to empower educators, social workers, parents, youth, and most of all, women.

The H2A has gathered a group of the most progressive and accomplished women in Hip-Hop to form the WLP Advisory Committee. The committee includes luminaries such as Dr. Roxanne Shante, Martha Cooper, DJ Beverly Bonds, Toofly, Raquel Cepeda, Suhier Ammad, Toni Blackman, Raqiyah Mays, Michaela Angela Davis, and Dr. Irma McClaurin. Together with the Social Services of Hip-Hop, We B*Girlz, Where My Ladies at? Interactive Film, and We Got Issues! they are committed to being part of the WLP and celebrating the Year of the Hip-Hop Woman.

The Womanhood Learning Project also includes the forthcoming and much anticipated resource book entitled, Fresh, Bold, and So Def: Women In Hip-Hop Changing The Game, edited by Martha Diaz and Felicia Pride. Groundbreaking and informative, Fresh, Bold, and So Def is best described as an encyclopedia of pioneering and trendsetting women that have persevered and broken down barriers to make a difference in not only Hip-Hop culture but society as a whole. It will profile over 300 international artists, industry professionals, and social activists and set to be the premiere inspirational source for educating on the legacy of the history of women in Hip-Hop.

The Year of the Hip-Hop Woman is about change, paying homage to the contributions of women, and creating a balance among men and women. This is not a campaign about blame, shame or game; Women in Hip-Hop want to be respected, depicted correctly, and appreciated for the roles they play in society.

Womanhood Learning Project H2A Team Martha Diaz, President of the Hip-Hop Association Mona Ibrahim, Director of Community Building and Program Development Nakia Alston, H2A Communications and Development Coordinator Beth Sachnoff, Head Researcher, H2Ed Communications and Development Coordinator Kompalya Thunderbird, Director of Media Acquisition and Communications Deanne Ziadie-Nemitz – Media Preservation Coordinator Amanda Cumbow, Researcher Ebonie Smith, Researcher

Womanhood Learning Project Partners Jineea Butler-Graham – Hip-Hop Analyst, Social Services of Hip-Hop J-Love – Activist, Author – White Girl, We Got Issues Leba Haber – Director of the interactive film, Where My Ladies At? Nika Kramer – Writer, Translator, Activist – We B*Girlz (Germany)

Womanhood Learning Project Advisory Committee

Toni Blackman – Freestyle Union and US State Dept. Ambassador // Beverly Bond – DJ, Activist – Black Girls Rock Foundation // Maria “Toofly” Castillo – Graffiti Artist, Activist – The Younity  // Raquel Cepeda – Filmmaker, Author, Journalist // Rosa Clemente – Activist, Cultural Critic, Know Thyself  // Martha Cooper – Pioneer Photographer, Author – We B*Girlz // Michaela Davis – Fashionista, Cultural Critic // Tamara Dawit – Activist – What’s the 411? (Canada) // Caridad “La Bruja” De La Luz – MC, Poet, Activist – Latinas 4 Life // Dowoti Desir – Director, Malcolm X & Dr. Betty Shabazz Memorial & Educational Center // Delphine Diallo – Photographer, Filmmaker, Visual Artist (France) // Johanna Guevara – 7one8Designs // Suheir Hammad – Poet, Author, Activist // Indy Hunjan – Kala Phool (England) // Raqiyah Mays – Managing Editor, The Ave and Radio Host for Hot 97 // Dr. Irma McClaurin – Scholar, Poet, Writer, Author // Felicia Pride – Journalist, Author, The Message Rokafella – B-Girl, Activist –  Full Circle Productions // Dr. Tricia Rose – Pioneer Scholar, Author, Black Noise, Brown University // Marcella Runell Hall – Author, Activist, Educator, NYU // Dr. Theda Palmer Saxon – Life coach, Pres. of Seasoned Woman, Inc., Author, Pace U. // Raquel Sanchez – Alphabet City Design // Dr. Roxanne Shante – Pioneer MC and Psychologist // Akiba Solomon – Journalist, Author – Naked: Black Women Bare All About Their Skin, Hair, Hips, Lips, and Other Parts

Who’s involved