Meet Me at the Margins: Performing Resistance to Police Brutality Open Access

Ekunseitan, Jumonke (Spring 2018)

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After a surge of racially-charged killings of unarmed Black citizens, artists D’Angelo, Beyoncé, and Kendrick Lamar have used their platforms and artistry to speak out against police brutality. Protest music and performance is not a new convention, and the aforementioned artists sit on the shoulders of many who went before them. However, the performances I examine in my thesis are special cases in their use of counter-language, place, and subversion of the normative gaze. Applying the theories of bell hooks, Stuart Hall, Cornel West, and Michel Foucault, I examine the politics of protest performance in sanctioned spaces and their potential as catalysts for change.

Table of Contents

Introduction                                                                           1

The Charade                                                                          11

Towards a New Formation                                                  15

The Labor of Unsanctioned Resistance                         29

“This Is a Satire by Kendrick Lamar”                          32

#Beychella: From Resistance to Insistence               38

Conclusion                                                41

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