Editorial:: The Word Life Publication Mission and Vision.

The Word Life Publication Mission and Vision

The Word Life Publication is an editorial journal of Hip-hop and critical theory under the Word::Life Collective brand and edited in the offices in Los Angeles. Continuous publication began under its founding editor and publisher Damien McDuffie with the co-operation with Taylor Hunter, Dhajee Kelly, and Audrey Kim September in 2012.  Inspired by the original transcripts of The Crisis, a magazine critical of racial prejudice and published by W.E.B. DuBois via the NAACP, The Word Life Publication hopes to earn the position of The Crisis’ intellectual descendant in the Hip-hop arena.

WLP’s purpose is to “present a compelling perspective of Hip-hop lifestyles that respect its literary legitimacy as well as its musical & cultural artistry.” Its publication strives to drive Hip-hop’s brand toward a more perfect dimension of critical pedagogy by positioning itself as the custodian, interpreter, and forecaster of Hip-hop’s critical consciousness.  The Word::Life utilizes the preeminent cultural influence that shapes the black image–Hip-hop–to combat contemporary views that lack proper context. Hip-hop’s broad appeal allows  The Word Life Publication to participate in cultivate critical consciousness that illuminate Hip-hop lifestyles without limiting our appeal solely to black culture. We hope to use our editorial pages unique perspective to target educated young adults interested in Hip-hop culture and theory.

The Naming of Word Life.

The name of Word::Life, the parent brand of The Word Life Publication [WLP] journal, stems from WLP’s belief in the idea that “words are akin to truth as a source of knowledge and an essential building block for communal life.” As such, The World Life Publication believes that life begins at the point of interaction and “when  we engage in an exchange of words–or literature for that matter, we are engaging in a spiritual exchange of ideas.” The ‘::’ symbol between ‘Word’ & ‘Life’ represents the interdependence between two. Words are to life as life is to word, or Word::Life.

The Editorial Stance.

According to the Opportunity Agenda, “among platforms that generate their own editorial or entertainment content, magazines reach the largest numbers of black men (and women)” and thus have the greatest impact on blacks perception of themselves and the general public’s perception of black Americans. Furthermore, the Heinz Foundation found that “crime coverage ranked only second to sports” and positive depictions of black youth “appeared rarely” in media.

Hip-hop’s broad appeal allows The Word Life Publication to cultivate a collective consciousness that enables Hip-hop to prevent the further stunting of black progression in America. Using the lens of Hip-hop to influence the image of blackness allows WLP to inform the imagination of the world by doing more than simply challenging one-dimensional depictions of Hip-hop; Word::Life strives to create new perspectives and ideas of and Hip-hop perception. 

The Purpose.

The Word Life Publication is a journal that fosters creative agency, promotes independent ideals, and challenges ontological stereotypes in Hip-hop by articulating critical theories within Hip-hop.  The object of The Word Life Publication is to foster critical skills that help to equip listeners and surveyors of Hip-hop culture with the language, unique perspective, and the analytical ability to digest Hip-hop culture and meanings in an accessible way.

Resolving that Hip-hop’s destiny and black culture share the same legacy, The Word Life Publication develops, showcases, and promotes the belief that Hip-hop has the power to educate youth and illuminate the world. The Word Life Publication respects Hip-hop’s cultural influence over the black image and uses it to create contemporary views of Hip-hop that lack proper context.

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