What makes a good an notator? … This is a question that Genius, whose slightly megalomaniacal slogan is “
Annotate the world,” is still grappling with. The site launched in 2009 as Rap Genius, devoted to the explication of rap lyrics. These origins have been the occasion for a lot of dismissive jokes, but it makes perfect sense that an annotation web site would orient itself toward such a dense, allusive art form. Rap, like Carroll’s writing, is full of mysteries that cry out for explanation: Think of the Wu-Tang Clan’s mix of Five Percenter lingo,references to kung fu films, and drug trade slang, for instance, or Kendrick Lamar’s brash collages of personal confession and black history. It’s also, as with children’s literature, an often disrespected genre that inspires a passionate devotion in highly intelligent people who are ready to sound the depths of their pleasures in order to prove the skeptics wrong.
Thursday, September 24, 2015
… Down the Rabbit Hole | The New Republic. (Hat tip, Dave Lull.)