Hip-Hop’s Re-Definitions — Code & Culture

The Refin­i­tions

2474340302_8116fb2603_zThe Temple of Hip-Hop uses the term Refin­i­tions as simply a word that means re-defin­i­tions. Hip-Hop Kul­ture in its ele­ment­ary form of street lan­guage has many refin­i­tions. It is deman­ded in Hip-Hop because every­day lan­guage changes with the times and cul­ture of the day. In this pro­cess words often adopt a dual mean­ing. For example; respect for the CHANGE in your purse or wal­let can CHANGE your life.

With a his­tory going back to the era of the Civil Rights Move­ment, the Black Power Move­ment and before these times, the streets have always had a code lan­guage. This way of com­mu­nic­at­ing with the use of words only com­mon to the streets is essen­tial with­in Hip-Hop Kul­ture. As lan­guage simply does not have enough words to express exactly what one maybe feel­ing, it raises the self value of Hiphop­pas to be read­ily cap­able of  some­times mix­ing two words or mak­ing a up new word alto­gether. 2608735394_66be1c9583_zAlthough some people con­sider this street slang, this is merely an out­side observer’s inter­pret­a­tion of a lan­guage they may not under­stand. Although some com­edy TV shows etc. may por­tray ‘street lingo’ or ‘rude­boy talk’ as simplist­ic, crude and ridicu­lous, when used intel­li­gently, it is not. The real essence of Street Lan­guage is a dif­fer­ent way of talk­ing when par­ti­cip­at­ing in the struggle of today’s inner cit­ies and urb­an areas, and a legit­im­ate and com­plex way of speak­ing in society.

As an example Hip-Hop’s street lan­guage in Eng­land, the word ‘Peak’ changes its mean­ings from the sum­mit of a moun­tain to recog­ni­tion of some­thing effect­ive like a good diss or a way of indic­at­ing some­thing is reach­ing the tip­ping point. It adds a meta­phor­ical value to every­day lan­guage without using the lit­eral mean­ing.  Sim­il­arly, in the U.S the word ‘free­style’ in rap music has changed inter­pret­a­tion from kickin’ lyr­ics off the top of ya dome to be a pre-writ­ten verse cre­at­ively based on a loose concept.

The Temple of Hip-Hop acknow­ledges words have a mean­ing in Street Lan­guage which today’s stand­ard dic­tion­ar­ies may not include. Obvi­ously words have migrated from the USA to the UK and oth­er Eng­lish speak­ing coun­tries. This is also true of vari­ous oth­er lan­guages across the world. Words in dif­fer­ent places, from coun­try to coun­try and city to city have dif­fer­ent mean­ings. Each area has its own unique Street Lan­guage. It is urged that any words used are respect­ful to our eld­ers and appro­pri­ate our to inner city envir­on­ments and liv­ing situ­ations. The inten­tions behind the words we use are a power­ful means to cre­ate Health, Love, Aware­ness and Wealth for Hiphop­pas, such is indeed what the pro­duct­ive Hip-Hop life­style produces.

Peace and Much Love from I Am Hip-Hop Magazine and The Temple Of Hip Hop.

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Vish ShvaOne

Vish is an Emcee, edu­ca­tion devel­op­ment lead­er at the Hip Hip His­tor­i­an Soci­ety and recently, co-dir­ect­or of Every Per­son is Cap­able. He works on Hip Hop com­munity mat­ters and lives to uplift people.

About Vish ShvaOne

Vish is an Emcee, education development leader at the Hip Hip Historian Society and recently, co-director of Every Person is Capable. He works on Hip Hop community matters and lives to uplift people.

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