“Released in the twilight of rap’s golden era, Nas‘s Illmatic is widely considered to be the greatest hip-hop album of all time and is frequently held as the yardstick by which all other contenders are measured. The discussion reflects on Nas’s career, the impact ofIllmatic, and the current state of hip-hop. Author, radio host, and Georgetown University professor Michael Eric Dyson, whose many books address subjects from Dr. Martin Luther King to Hurricane Katrina, is also the editor of Born to Use Mics, a collection of scholarly essays observing Illmatic through a panoramic lens, with a roster of talented writers taking an all-encompassing snapshot of the making and meaning behind Nas’s 1994 opus. James Braxton Peterson is the Director of Africana Studies and Associate Professor of English at Lehigh University. He is also the founder of Hip Hop Scholars, LLC, an association of hip-hop generational scholars dedicated to researching and developing the cultural and educational potential of hip-hop, urban, and youth cultures. Peterson has appeared on Fox News, CBS, MSNBC, ABC News, ESPN, and various local television networks as an expert on race, politics, and popular culture.
This event, produced by Georgetown University, is recognized as part of the Kennedy Center’s One Mic: Hip-Hop Culture Worldwide festival.” – Georgetown University