Notes on Contributors

Mumia Abu-Jamal is the author of five books. His radio commentaries are accessible via (Free Speech Radio) and www. He currently awaits a court ruling as to whether a hearing can be held on whether to admit into evidence significant testimony that has not been allowed into the official record of his case. For updates:

Hisham Aidi is a research fellow at Columbia Univeristy's Middle East Institute working on the University "Muslim Communities in New York Project" sponsored by the Ford Foundation.

Robert "Biko" Baker is a Ph.D. candidate in History at UCLA, and is researching the socio-political origins of hip-hop West Coast culture. He is a frequent contributor to the nation's top hip-hop magazines including The Source and is also an organizer for the National Hip-Hop Political Convention.

Regina Naasirah Blackburn is an independent scholar with research interests in African American literature. She holds a Ph.D. in American Studies from the University of New Mexico. Her essay on August Wilson's "decade plays" appeared in S&D #33.

Todd Boyd is a professor of Critical Studies at the University of Southern California School of Cinema-Television. His books include Am I Black Enough For You? Popular Culture from the 'Hood and Beyond and, as co-editor, Basketball Jones: America above the Rim. He produced and co-wrote the Paramount Pictures film The Wood.

Ryan Ford is co-founder and editor-in-chief of, the Internet's leading outlet for hip-hop and politics. He serves as West Coast Correspondent for The Source magazine. He coordinated the Brown and Black Presidential Forum at the 2004 Iowa Democratic Caucuses. He received his M.A. from UCLA in African-American Studies (2002) and his B.A. from the University of Iowa's School of Journalism (2000).

Ronald Hayduk teaches political science at the Borough of Manhattan Community College (CUNY). He co-edited Democracy's Moment and From ACTUP to the WTO; is the author of several book-chapters; and is active in various political struggles.

Lawrence James co-founded and is the Director of Grassroots Artists Movement (G.A.ME), a union of Hip-Hop artists working for progressive social change. For more information, see

Bakari Kitwana is a co-founder of The National Hip-Hop Political Convention and the author of The Hip-Hop Generation: Young Blacks and the Crisis in African American Culture (2002). He is currently completing a book entitled Why White Kids Love Hip-Hop.

George Martinez, the first "Hip Hop" elected official, was the District Leader of the 5st Assembly District in Brooklyn, and served as a high-ranking official in New York State Attorney General Elliot Spitzer's office.

John H. McClendon III is Associate Professor of African American Studies and American Cultural Studies at Bates College. He is the author of CLR James's Notes on Dialectics: Left Hegelianism or Marxism-Leninism? (2004) and Editor of the American Philosophical Association's Newsletter on Philosophy & the Black Experience.

Marcyliena Morgan is an Associate Professor in Harvard University's Department of African and African American Studies, and Director of the Hip Hop Archive at the W.E.B. Du Bois Institute for Afro-American Research.

Niamo Mu'id is a spiritual/cultural planner and writer. She is a co-founder of African Medicine Women sisters collective (NJ, CA) and the Muslim Women's Roundtable (NYC), which she represented as lead scribe at the World Conference Against Racism (2001). She is the author of The Spiritual Warrior's Guide to a Proven Islam (Anansi Clear Press).

Mark Naison is Professor African American Studies and Director of Urban Studies at Fordham University. His books include Communists in Harlem During the Depression and White Boy: A Memoir (reviewed in S&D #34).

Mark Anthony Neal is the author of four books including Songs in the Key of Black Life (2003) and the forthcoming NewBlackMan. He is co-editor (with Murray Forman) of That's the Joint!: The Hip-Hop Studies Reader (2004). Neal joins the faculty at Duke University this fall as Associate Professor of Black Popular Culture in the Program in African and African-American Studies.

Yusuf Nuruddin [pronounced "Noor-a-deen"] is a research fellow at Columbia University's School of International and Public Afffairs. He will join the faculty of the University of Toledo in fall, 2004 as a visiting professor of Africana Studies. He has taught Urban Studies at Queens College (CUNY) and African American Studies at The New School and Seton Hall University. He serves on the Board of Directors of the Brecht Forum, the Steering Committee of the LeftAlliance, the Planning Committee of the National Reparations Congress, the Coordinating Council of the Black Resistance Network, the Advisory Board of Gaither Reporter, and the Editorial Board of Socialism and Democracy.

Kevin Powell is a public speaker, activist, poet, journalist, hiphop historian, and author of five books. His work has appeared in Essence, Ms., the Washington Post, Newsweek, Rolling Stone, and Vibe, where he worked for several years as a senior writer. He is also a major contributor to the Vibe-edited book Tupac Shakur, which was a New York Times bestseller.

Jonathan Scott is an Assistant Professor of English at the City University of New York, Borough of Manhattan Community College, where he teaches literature and writing. His essay on "White Identity and Imaginative Literature" appeared in S&D #35.

Macdonald Stainsby is a 28-year-old anti-capitalist activist and student from Vancouver, currently residing in Montreal. His essays on the global justice movement have appeared in S&D #30 and #34.

Victor Wallis teaches in the General Education department at the Berklee College of Music. His essays on the recent history of the U.S. Left have appeared Monthly Review, New Political Science, and Socialism and Democracy, and in the anthology Liberation, Imagination, and the Black Panther Party.

Kristine Wright grew up with Hip Hop and currently teaches at the University of California-Irvine, where (in 2001) she created the course "Black Culture as Popular Culture: Examining Hip Hop." She has commented on Hip Hop-related issues for websites such as and