Katrina Flores, arts and education director for First Wave, a student organization that focuses on involving students in hip-hop culture on campus, said hip-hop studies allows for an interdisciplinary connection between departments because students can study hip-hop from a sociological, anthropological or scientific perspective.Maybe you should struggle with physics. Think about it: If the physics teachers on their own had decided to meld hip-hop with their classroom presentation on the theory that it would make it more accessible to you, you would have — or should have — felt insulted and outraged. And yet you want to make them do it to you.
“You can’t just come in and study somebody’s culture. You have to live it, you have to breathe it and you have to be doing it,” she said.
Flores added that she is currently working with the UW-Madison physics department to encourage them to do more interdisciplinary research between science and culture.
“I struggled with physics ... but if it can relate to my world and if we can be interdisciplinary in that way then there are so many more possibilities for engagement,” she said.
Gethsemane Herron, a UW-Madison freshman, said she does not see why UW-Madison wouldn’t have a hip-hop studies program, highlighting its importance in today’s society.So what is it? The answer, Ms. Herron (Merron?), is precisely that pop culture permeates the world of young Americans. Why pursue even more of it in college? Learn new things. Get what you can't get just living in the world soaking up the things you naturally love and enjoy. What is the point of going to college?
“How can we ignore something that has permeated American culture,” Merron said. “I feel like to not have hip-hop studies is to offer an incomplete education.”