HARI Collections

  • About Geoff Ward
  • Collection
  • Collection Materials

Geoff Ward is from Los Angeles, CA and is currently an Assistant Professor in the Department of Criminology, Law and Society at the University of California, Irvine. He studied sociology at Hampton University (BA, 1994) and the University of Michigan (PhD, 2001), and has been on the faculty of Northeastern University, a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Vera Institute of Justice, and a visiting scholar in African-American Studies at Columbia University.  His research and teaching focus on the racialization of criminal social control. In 2006, he received a W.E.B. DuBois Fellowship from the National Institute of Justice to study federal court workforce racial diversity and its relevance to racial disparity in federal sentencing. His research appears in various journals and anthologies, and he has recently completed a book on the rise and fall of Jim Crow juvenile justice entitled The Black Child-Savers: Racial Democracy in American Juvenile Justice (University of Chicago Press). His juvenile justice research stems in part from long-standing interests in hip-hop culture, politics and community. He has helped organize numerous hip-hop initiatives, including “hiphop studies collectives” at the University of Michigan and Northeastern University, the National Hiphop Political Convention, and an experimental literacy workshop using hiphop cultural artifacts, at McClymonds High School in Oakland, California. He remains passionate about preserving the material culture of hiphop, and using these resources in the development and empowerment of youth and their communities.  

The Hiphop Archive is proud to present our extensive “Geoff Ward Collection.” Comprised of a large donation of hiphop-related periodicals and VHS cassette tapes, the collection provides a valuable historical account of hiphop culture from a popular perspective. Additionally, they give any student or researcher a glimpse of the issues and concerns surrounding the hiphop community throughout various periods of its development. 

The collection features an extensive range of magazine titles, ranging from mainstream publications like Vibe and Source to lesser-known magazines such as 4080, F.E.D.S, and The Rap Pages. The Source magazine is the most comprehensive title in the collection with copies ranging from 1993 to 2003. A decade packed with fascinating and immensely important landmarks in the history of Hiphop, articles about the contentious “East Coast/West Coast” discussion (interviews with Ice Cube and Suge Knight), the first appearance and subsequent rise of contemporary artists (Nas, Mos Def, and Eminem), the contributions of hiphop’s fallen stars (Notorious B.I.G, Tupac, and Big Pun), and many more can be found.
In addition to these periodicals there are thirty VHS tapes that feature popular music video programming, BET and CNN news clips, and educational programs that aired between 1993 and 2001.

The collection also contains numerous Rap City (BET) episodes from 1995 through 1996.  Each Rap City tape features one episode from a particular month.  These 2-6 hour videos are filled with hit songs from an era that now often referred to as “old school.”  These Rap City episodes are not just music videos; they feature guest appearances, newsbreaks, and hiphop-related feature segments throughout the show that all allow a glimpse into exactly what point of hiphop history you are watching. The guests appearing on Rap City were usually there to promote a newly released album or an upcoming tour.  If you are lucky you might even catch a freestyle.

Twenty-five VHS tapes from the Geoff Ward Collection have been converted to DVD for public viewing.  The remaining tapes are available in their original VHS format. 
If you would like to view any of these materials, please contact the Hiphop Archive at info@hiphoparchive.org


GW Collection List

Strengthening Literacy through Hip Hop

  • About Eric Arnold
  • 4080 Magazine Collection
  • Collection Materials

After graduating with a degree in American Studies from UC Santa Cruz, Eric became Music Editor of Bay Area-based 4080 magazine in 1993, later becoming Editorial Director. After leaving 4080, Eric became the “In the Hood” columnist for the Source magazine, writing about regional hip-hop scenes across the country, as well as a groundbreaking piece on international hip-hop in Japan. In 2000, he profiled inner-city documentary filmmaker Kevin Epps in a cover story for the SF Bay Guardian. In 2001, Eric was a consultant for Yerba Buena Center for the Arts’ “Hip Hop by the Bay” exhibition, and in 2002, he was Program Coordinator for “Hip Hop and Beyond,” an academic conference held at UC Berkeley. In 2003, he began writing the “Close 2 tha Edge” column for East Bay Express; more cover stories followed, on pioneering Asian-American rapper Lyrics Born and the “ New Bay” movement. Eric has also contributed a chapter to the 2007 Pluto Press anthology “The Vinyl Ain’t Final.” 

The Eric Arnold Collection is comprised of "4080 Magazine" issues, ranging from 1994 to 1996. Besides exclusive interviews with artists of such renown as Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg, and Nas, the articles also highlight less commercial performers, for example: Erick Sermon, Mac Dre, and Khayree. 4080 also addresses those aspects of hiphop culture that are often neglected by mainstream print media; providing commentary on hiphop fashion, and contemporary "conscious" rappers.

Another hallmark of 4080's writing is to recognize and pay tribute to the pioneers of hiphop music. The magazine regularly prepares "special reports" on important events in the genre's development: the legacy of Tupac Shakur, and the tragedy of Young Lay. The contributions of "old school" rappers are also acknowledged: Master P, Pharcyde, and The GZA.

  • About DeAnna Dodds
  • B-Girl Be Collection
  • Collection Materials

DeAnna Dodds Cummings was born in the 1970s and came of age as Hip Hop made its way across middle America.  The political and cultural movements of the 70s and 80s undergird Cummings’ work as an entrepneur, scholar, activist and mother.  In 1995 DeAnna, her husband Rogerand their childhood friend Peyton founded Juxtaposition Arts.  Juxtaposition is a North Minneapolis cultural organization that nurtures urban youth in their chosen forms of visual art expression, including Hip-Hop inspired aerosol art. It provides them with mentoring, equipment, audiences, business skills, connections to new networks, and a neighborhood place to convene. Juxtaposition offers free year-round visual art and design workshops for youth, creative entrepreneurship mentoring for young people, and arts-based opportunities for residents and stakeholders in neighborhoods that have been politically and economically disinvested from, to participate in community planning and development. Juxtaposition engages local, regional and international audiences through public festivals, symposiums, and exhibitions. As its Executive Director, DeAnna has guided the growth of Juxtaposition from serving 15 youth in 1995, to more than 3,000 young people, 30 adult emerging artists, and 50 collaborative partners in 2008 and has raised $1.8 million in operating and capital funding over the organization’s lifetime.

Cummings was the curator of the Art of T&A: Truth and Activisim, and one of six women who founded B-Girl Be: A Celebration of Women in Hip Hop. Launched in 2005, B-Girl Be is housed at Intermedia Arts in Minneapolis, Minnesota. It is an -annual visual art show, performance showcase, lecture and workshop series.  B-Girl Be founders saw the need to tell the stories of women's contributions to Hip Hop. In today's pop culture, women in Hip Hop are too often spotlighted for their appearance rather than their skills and messages. When women have space to explore, create and perform, a diverse resource of female role models and mentors is unearthed for the next Hip Hop generation of both girls and boys. Hip Hop icons Rokafella, Pam the Funkstress, Medusa, DJ Kuttin Kandi, Asia One, Lady Pink and Martha Cooper are some of the legends who have been featured artists, mentors, and supporters of B-Girl Be.

In 2005 the Jaycee’s named DeAnna one of Ten Outstanding Young Minnesota’s.  In 2008 she received an Archibald A. Bush Leadership Fellowship to pursue graduate studies at Harvard University. DeAnna graduated with a Masters degree in Public Administration from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government in 2009.

The B-Girl Be Collection is a donation from DeAnna Dodds Cummings who is the co-founder of B-Girl Be and executive director and co-founder of Juxtaposition Arts.  This collection features a video documentary produced by Emetrece Productions, event flyers, posters, and workshop materials with artwork by Toofly and Faith47. These materials are vital to preserving the role of women in Hip Hop.

B-Girl Be: A Celebration of Women in Hip-Hop is a multimedia festival encompassing the four elements of Hip Hop: MCing, DJing, break dancing and aerosol writing.  Between 2003-2005, DeAnna Cummings, Desdamona, Leah Nelson, Rachel Raimist, Melisa Riviere, and Theresa Sweetland met weekly at Intermedia Arts in Minneapolis, to develop the idea and concept for B-Girl Be. In 2005, with money raised through fundraisers, sponsors and foundations, Intermedia Arts and the B-Girl Be co-founding directorsproduced the first-of-its-kind international women focused Hip Hop summit in history. Women of all ages, colors and nationalities convened to celebrate Hip Hop and share their knowledge, skills and experiences with the world. For the first time ever Intermedia Arts' exterior was painted by an all-female crew representing Japan, New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, Kansas City, Phoenix, Puerto Rico, and Minneapolis. B-Girl Be came at a crucial time in Hip Hop, where images of women are often stereotypical and one-sided. It is the intention of B-Girl Beto dispel these myths and provide tools, connections, creative space and role models so that females can continue to be creators and innovators in Hip Hop culture.

Since its inception, this annual four-day summit has brought over 200 international, national and local girls and women in Hip Hoptogether in Minneapolis for dialogues, art-making, screenings, visual art exhibits,  performances, educational workshops and networking opportunities.

The mission of B-Girl Be is to influence and inspire leadership to change the perceptions and roles of women in Hip Hopfor current and future generations.

  • About Dawn-Elissa Fischer
  • Japanese Hiphop Collection
  • Collection Materials

Dawn-Elissa Fischer (a.k.a. the "D.E.F." Professor) is one of the Associate Directors assisting Professor Morgan at the Hiphop Archive. The DEF Prof currently works with the Hiphop University, Youth Education, Gender and Sexuality as well as Japanese Hiphop projects at the Hiphop Archive. She is also an Assistant Professor in the Department of Africana Studies at San Francisco State University, where she teaches courses on black popular culture, digital research design and visual ethnography. DEF has worked on a number of different community-based campaigns using Hiphop to address issues of voter disenfranchisement, gender based violence, literacy and the digital divide. For over 15 years, she has been traveling within and outside of the United States, committing herself to academic and political work. She has studied and worked with Hiphop social movement organizations internationally in Japan, South Africa, Tanzania, Senegal, Sweden, China, Norway, Cuba, Jamaica and Russia. She has received various awards and grants for her research, including support from the Japan Foundation, the Mellon Mays Fellowship Program and the Social Science Research Council. DEF is currently working on a manuscript concerning Hiphop, race and blackness in Japan.

The Dawn-Elissa Fischer Collection contains books, CDs, DVDs, periodicals, event programs, and flyers from Japan. Professor Fischer began collecting material in Japan in the late 1990s while she was a student at the University of Florida, Gainesville. This collection features a "Dictionary of African American Slang" by Nami Makoto written for Japanese youth. It also includes a number of promotional materials for the breakdance events and concerts from Bboy Park, Japan's annual Hiphop festival that takes place in Yoyogi Park, and periodicals like Woofin' Magazine which offer insight into how American artists are received by Japan's hiphop community.

The audio and video component of this collection features a 2002 documentary co-produced by the collections donor, Prof. Dawn-Elissa Fischer, entitled "Nihon Style." Along with this DVD there are various mixes by DJ Kaori and records from Zeebra to name a few.