Afropop Worldwide is proud to announce that the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) chose to fund the Hip Deep series for the ninth year in a row. In our 2012-13 season, our reporters will go to Beirut, now an epicenter of the Arab music and film industry, Haiti, the Dominican Republic, Mexico and elsewhere. And NEH support will help us keep making improvements on our web site and enable us to live up to our commitment to publishing fresh content daily.
A moderate amount of bragging: The NEH’s independent review panel praised our “unsurpassed” media team and said, “Afropop truly bridges cultures, engaging the world’s best historians, ethnomusicologists, and literary scholars to serve as translators of regions and cultures unknown to many Americans.” And let’s not forget showcasing the coolest music happening on the continent and in the diaspora.
Banning Eyre, Afropop.org’s Senior Editor, says “I continue to believe that the work we are doing is crucial and essential to this country. At a time when Americans are tending to narrow their focus and disengage from the world, we are fighting the good fight to resist this trend, using music as our stealth weapon. Supporting culture in Africa and the diaspora, and reminding Americans of our deep connections to this diaspora, also feeds larger humanitarian goals related to health, freedom, good governance, fighting AIDS, the advancement of women, and more. As a prominent Algerian musician said to me recently in Montreal, with politicians increasingly mistrusted, and world media an ever more absurd circus, culture and arts provide the best venue for new ideas in the world today.”