BrownTown sits down with Chicago rapper and activist Tweak’G to discuss her organizing origins, finding hip-hop, military service, and journey navigating these spaces as an outspoken Black Lesbian.
This is the fifth Chicago Drill and Activism (AKA "Chi DNA") installment of Bourbon ’n BrownTown. Chi DNA is an ongoing documentary and multimedia project, which also features interviews, micro-documentaries, and editorial pieces on drill rap and the activist resurgence in Chicago.
Tweak’G is a rapper and activist who has been on the front lines of the two successful grassroots campaigns in Chicago--#ByeAnita and #TraumaCenterNow at the U of Chicago. Her aggressive and truthful lyrics have been incorporated in the movement, most notably in the now infamous #RealTalk which targets Rahm’s administration after the Laquan McDonald shooting and cover-up. Born and raised in Chicago, Tweak spent 6-years in the military and now simultaneously traverses Chicago’s activist and underground rap scene as an unapologetic Black Lesbian ready for her next project.
Tweak’G discusses growing up in Chicago, how the Laquan McDonald scandal politicized her, the current #NoCopAcademy fight, and the new U of Chicago trauma center for adults opening in May 2018. Tweak and BrownTown also contrast the activism of today and yesteryear, noting differences in challenging patriarchy and deconstructing gender roles and sexuality.
The Chicago Drill and Activism project explores the creation, meaning, perspectives, and connections between drill rap and the resurgence of grassroots activism since the early 2010s through the eyes of the people involved. It focuses on contemporary Chicago as an intentional place for the resurgence of these two formations of cultural and political resistance during relatively the same time period. It examines how authenticity, community, and other important values to the subjects are impacted and promoted via technology, social media, and a rejection of traditional means of movement politics and corporate structures. As told by activists and drill rappers alike, the project situates the the subjects’ experiences and actions into a broader theoretical and empirical history of systemic inequality and resistance in Chicago. Follow the ongoing project at Chi-DNA.com for more.
Follow Tweak on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Listen to her on Soundcloud and YouTube.
CREDITS: Intro song #RealTalk by Tweak'G. Outro song 16 Shots by Vic Mensa. Audio engineered by Genta Tamashiro.
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