Feb. 17 Idris Goodwin SLAM Poetry Metropolitan Community College Elkorn Valley Campus 204th and Dodge, 1 p.m., FREE Idris Goodwin is a man of many hats — educator, hip-hop artist, HBO Def Poet, essayist and award-winning playwright. When Goodwin speaks, you have no choice but to listen, as almost every word he utters is a lesson in itself. These Are The Breaks is Goodwin‘s debut collection of poetic essays that touches on topics such as race, culture and class, delivered with an unmistakable cadence. Born in Detroit, Goodwin has branched out to Los Angeles, Chicago, Albuquerque and Iowa City and has witnessed all sides of American culture and, more specifically, hip-hop culture. “The concept of hip-hop as a culture has become more and more pervasive across the world. I’m showing how hip-hop presents an alternative polycultural paradigm,” Goodwin says. “Most people’s misconceptions are in the world of entertainment. They think of it as just music — not as hip-hop being a culture. It’s become part of American capitalism. Before Sugar Hill Gang, hip-hop had always been polycultural. Only when we started messing with corporations did it become about sex and race. You can’t sell culture. You can only experience culture.” Goodwin will read from These Are The Breaks Thursday at Metro’s Elkhorn campus.

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