Date of Award


Degree Type

Capstone Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts in Cultural Studies (BA)


Cultural Studies

First Advisor

Douglas Reichert Powell

Second Advisor

Robert E. Watkins

Third Advisor

Kenneth Daley


This project will examine the change in representations of blackness and black character in commercially successful hip hop music through music videos directed by Hype Williams from 1995 to 2005. This research will use a womanist approach to address the significant historical influence of storytelling in the black narrative and how the emerging concepts of hypermasculinity and the degradation of the black body have seemingly become the new normal. These concepts largely contribute to the negative stereotypical perceptions of black identity that keeps black bodies marginalized because there is little diversity in the public representations of blackness while there exists an abundance of black representation.