Marcia Alesan DawkinsFeb 28, 2014
The Real Slim Shady
Who is Eminem? Is he a violent misogynist, another "white" performer imitating African American musical styles, or is he something else entirely? In her provocative bookEminem: The Real Slim Shady(Praeger, 2013), Marcia Alesan Dawkins offers a fresh look at Eminem and sees him as a cultural critic, spiritual seeker, and a polyethnic American. Her study examines Eminem's lyrics closely and helps us understand why he has been such a popular artist. In this interview, Dawkins explains the formative influences that have shaped Eminem's music. We also discuss how Dawkins reviewed all of his lyrics and coded them into categories. That research reveals how his music has grown and developed over his career. The interview culminates by considering Eminem's place within hip hop culture. Marcia Dawkins is an award-winning writer and speaker. She is a Professor at the University of Southern California and the author of Clearly Invisible: Racial Passing and the Color of Cultural Identity(2012). She tracks trends in diversity, technology, culture, and communication for a variety of high-profile publications. Her expert opinion has been sought out by NPR, WABC-TV Boston andTIME Magazine. You can find out more information at her website, MarciaDawkins.com.