Hip hop culture includes many forms of expression, including rap music, graffiti art, slam poetry, fashion, and film. Since its beginnings in the Bronx in the 1970s, hip hop has become a global cultural force. It has also become the focus of serious academic inquiry, as scholars examine the influence of hip hop on contemporary society, culture, and identity.

Alain-Philippe Durand is the director of the School of International Languages, Literatures, and Cultures at the University of Arizona. Durand is also the author of Black, Blanc, Beur: Rap Music and Hip Hop Culture in the Francophone World, a book that examines the complex history and global appeal of this widely-adapted aspect of popular culture.