Urban Women Week: Promoting Women on the Senegalese Rap Scene

Cécile Navarro

Abstract


The growing interest in gender equality at festivals contrasts with the relative lack of scholarly attention given to festivals as sites of gender politics. Organized by a Senegalese association which promotes urban cultures, the example of Urban Women Week – a Senegalese festival which aims to promote women in hip hop, including rap music – leads me to revisit a gendered perspective on festivals while tackling the neglected issue of women’s presence in a rap music scene dominated by the “patriarchal impulses of the Senegalese hip hop establishment” (Neff 2015: 460). How are we to understand the adoption of a focus on women by the organizers of the festival in Senegal? Is rap music a specific place where women are empowered in the Senegalese context? Based on fieldwork carried out on the rap music scene in Senegal, I situate the establishment and evolution of the festival as a way for the association to respond to local claims for the inclusion of women in rap music while benefiting from a global agenda of gender mainstreaming, thereby exploring the glocal intricacies of gender politics in music.

Keywords


Festival; Gender: Glocalisation; Rap; Senegal

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References


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Discography

Elzo Jamdong. 2016. “Yow Lë”, Freengdom, Oven Entertainment, 27 May 2016, Senegal.

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Amadou Fall Ba. 2015. Interviewed by the author, Dakar, 13 June.

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