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KNOXVILLE –- Intercultural Intersections will feature “Hip-Hop: Beyond Beats & Rhymes” at 2 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 24, in the Hodges Library Auditorium at the University of Tennessee.

Intercultural Intersections, sponsored by the Ready for the World initiative, is a series of Sunday afternoon events designed to help UT students, faculty and staff and the public explore cultures meeting across national, ethnic, racial, religious, political and sexual boundaries. Events include films, forums and other activities.

“Hip-Hop: Beyond Beats & Rhymes,” by filmmaker Byron Hurt, a lifelong hip-hop fan, is a documentary that tackles issues of masculinity, sexism, violence and homophobia in today’s hip-hop culture. The film includes interviews with famous rappers including Mos Def, Fat Joe, Chuck D and Jadakiss and hip-hop mogul Russell Simmons. It also includes commentary from a variety of writers, scholars and cultural critics.

Kasey Baker, a UT graduate student in English, will be facilitating a discussion after the film.

Here’s a look at films that will be shown during upcoming Intercultural Intersections:

• March 2 — “Wild Woman Don’t Have the Blues” looks at Ma Rainey, Bessie Smith, Ida Cox, Alberta Hunter, Mamie Smith and other great female blues performers of the 1920s who helped launched a craze for the genre.

• March 9 — “What I Want My Words to Do to You” focuses on a writing group led by playwright and activist Eve Ensler at the Bedford Hills Correctional Facility.

The goal of “Ready for the World: The International and Intercultural Awareness Initiative” is to transform the campus into a culture of diversity that best prepares students for working and competing in the 21st century. The initiative involves increasing the diversity among students, faculty and staff; infusing the curriculum with international and intercultural content; expanding study-abroad and work-study opportunities; and encouraging students to take advantage of all of these opportunities.
For more information about Ready for the World, see http://www.utk.edu/readyfortheworld/.


Amy Blakely, (865) 974-5034, amy.blakely@tennessee.edu