There’s a new course at Washington
University in St. Louis focused on
everything Kanye West.
Confirming to Billboard, Professor Jeffrey
McCune, ‘Seventy-five students are
currently registered for “Politics of Kanye
West: Black Genius and Sonic Aesthetics,”
a course which began this week and there’s
a waiting list to sign up for the class’.
The course description reads ‘Kanye West
As a hip-hop artist Kanye West has had
unprecedented impact on the sonic force of
music, fashion, politics, and videography.
Coupling his controversial moments, with
his corpus of musical texts with special
focus on sonic production, this course
illuminates Mr. West as a case study for
interrogating the interplay between fame,
gender, sexuality, and race. Mostly, we
explore how racialized ways of doing
iconography, complex ways of seeing,
creates a distorted or reductive frame
through which we see the black and
famous. Nonetheless, the course oscillates
with entertaining these nuances, while
being entertained by the decade-long
catalogue of music and visual imagery.
Together, we extract the ‘Politics of Mr.
West’ in his music and life, while also
illuminating the importance of a politics of
genius-making in the larger arc of black
pop culture tradition.’
This won’t be the first college course about
Kanye. In 2014, the University of Missouri
offered a course focused on Kanye and Jay
Z. That course explored three main themes,
including where West and Hov fit within,
and how they changed the history of hip-