Ramona Mosse obtained her university education in English and Comparative Literature in the UK and the USA. A recipient of the Whiting Foundation Fellowship in the Humanities, she completed her PhD thesis, Between Tragedy and Utopia; Revolution and the Political Stage after 1945, at Columbia University (2008). In addition, she has worked as a writer and dramaturg in New York´s down-town theatres with such companies as Mabou Mines, Target Margin, and the Ontological- Hysteric Theatre. Both practically and theoretically, her work engages with the making of politics on the stage.
How to Pick a Fight: Hip Hop, Opera, and the Politics of Music
This project explores American hip hop culture’s rising engagement with the theatre, examining the recent work of such artists as Will Power, Danny Hoch, and Marc Bamuthi. Hip hop is a case study that operates on a paradox. Its aesthetic of combat poses a stumbling block for transcultural discourses and yet, it simultaneously employs cultural mash-ups as its aesthetic norm. Its concept of battle—especially when fusing its elements rap, spoken word, graffiti, and break dancing on a single stage—questions the benign relativism in cultural theory. Likewise, hip hop theatre pits its musical and verbal representations against each other, creating a contest of the arts that evokes the operatic.