Resistance and preservation: Healing in Indigenous Hip-Hop

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A conversation with the artists was followed by an impromptu performance and a Q&A session. From stress relief to aiding with memory loss linked to Alzheimer’s and dementia, the therapeutic benefits of music play a vital role in personal health. However, the intersection of indigenous traditions and hip-hop shows that music can also heal cultural wounds. Indigenous hip-hop rappers, producers, and activists Dioganhdih and Chhoti Maa were featured in a public event hosted by The Center for Ethnomusicology on Friday. Ethnomusicologist Lauren Amsterdam moderated a conversation with the artists, which was followed by an impromptu performance and a Q&A session. Dioganhdih is a queer Haudenosaunee hip-hop artist and producer originally from the Akwesasne Mohawk territory. Their music delves into sexuality, gender identity, re-indigenization, and indigenous culture. Chhoti Maa is a multidisciplinary artist from Guanajuato, Mexico based in Oakland, California. As a rapper, singer, and producer, her music centers on “decolonial living, red medicine, queerness, migrant empowerment, love, and the reconstruction of the womyn temple.” Since meeting in San Francisco, the two artists have formed a musical partnership known for its multilingualism, energetic beats, and provocative lyrics. Most recently, the duo has collaborated on Chhoti Maa’s second studio album, Caldo […]

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