Rap and religion will converge this fall at Dillard University when Dr. Monica Miller gives two lectures on those subjects. On Sept. 30, Miller, the assistant professor of Religion and Africana Studies and the director of Women, Gender and Sexuality Studies at Lehigh University, will deliver a public lecture at 3 p.m. and then speak to Dillard President Walter M. Kimbrough’s class at 4:30 p.m.
The first lecture, Respect the Technique: How Hip Hop’s “God Complex” Changed the Face of Black Religion, draws from Real Recognize Read: Aporetic Flows and the Presence of New Black Godz in Hip Hop. The book features Michael Eric Dyson and two chapters from Miller and Religion in Hip Hop: Mapping the New Terrain in the US (Bloomsbury), with Dr. Pinn and rapper Bernard "Bun B" Freeman.
In the second lecture, for Kimbrough’s class, Miller will discuss Bad B***h': Gender, Sex, and the Politics of Keeping it 'Real' and 'Right' in Hip Hop. Prior to the talk, the class is tasked with reading "Scapegoats, Boundaries, and Blame: The Civic Face of Hip-Hop Culture" from Religion and Hip Hop (Routledge, Monica Miller, 2012/2013).
Miller’s research interests include religion in youth culture, popular culture, identity and difference, new black religious movements and theory and method in the study of religion. She earned her Ph.D. in Theology, Ethics, and Human Science from Chicago Theological Seminary (2010), M.T.S. from Drew Theological School (2006) and a B.A. in Religious Studies from Fordham University (2004). She is the author of a multitude of articles and book chapters, as well as Religion and Hip Hop (Routledge, 2012). She currently serves as a Senior Research Fellow with The Institute for Humanist Studies (Washington, DC) and is co-chair and founder of Critical Approaches to the Study of Hip Hop and Religion Group (American Academy of Religion).
Her work has been featured in a host of regional and national print, radio, live video and TV news outlets including NPR, The Washington Post, The Oregonian, The Root, Left of Black and Huffington Post Live. She has guest lectured at colleges, universities and conferences throughout the U.S., Cuba and Canada. Miller writes for Huffington Post, BET.com and the Culture on the Edge Scholarly Collective. Her website is http://www.religionandhiphop.com and can be found on Twitter@religionhiphop.