PSU news by
Penn State's student blog

Topics

About

Film Shows Los Problemas of Cuban Rappers

Yesterday, a whole bunch of sponsoring groups showed the film “East of Havana” in the Pattee Library as part of “Rompiendo Barreras, Abriendo Caminos” ( “Breaking Borders, Opening Paths”). “RB, AC” is being held over the next couple of days and celebrates having Cuban rappers at Penn State for the first time ever. Since the movie featured a combo of Cuba and hip-hop, Onward State’s honorary “Whitest Reporter on the Staff” (a much-coveted title in the newsroom) was selected to go.

The film basically taught me about all the terrible things Cuban rappers have to put up with to practice their art. The biggest difference I saw between growing up on the streets of Cuba versus America is the fact that complaining about your economical situation is illegal in Cuba. Criticizing those in power likewise isn’t the national pastime we know it to be in America. Finally, the rappers only got the chance to perform once a year at a festival paid for by the local community center. The one scheduled for the year during which “East of Havana” was filmed was cancelled on account of showers of prejudice and scattered racism.

Specifically, the film detailed the lives of rappers Soandry, who lived in a rundown shanty; Magyori, who lived in a rundown shanty; and Michel “Mikki Flow” Hermida, who lived in a rundown shanty next to the ocean. All three of the hip-hoppers had to balance busting mad rhymes with not starving to death. Problems specific to each included Soandry’s brother booking it to the United States, Magyori selling everything in her house to buy food, and Mikki Flow apparently lacking in belts to hold his pants up.

If I learned anything from “East of Havana,” it’s that Cuba can be a worse place to live than I previously imagined. In America, rap music is a means to express your feelings if you’re angry and annoy your neighbors if you’re not. For many in Cuba, it is a method of survival.

About the Author

John Dempsey

John is a Junior majoring in Journalism from Hazleton, PA. He is so awesome that sharks dedicate a week to him.
Likes: Video games, vigilante justice, irony, talking bears, Burt Reynolds, El Chupacabra, coloring books, chainsaws, and Australians.
Dislikes: Zombies, clowns, zombie clowns, turtleneck sweaters, Apple, poor mustache grooming, nuclear winter, Roman architecture, guacamole, robots, LCD TVs, the color yellow, Velcro, ceiling fans, sprinklers, tornadoes, Belgians, squat thrusts, and romantic comedies.

Comments

More by John

The 3 Keys to Never Graduating

It is that time of year again. The weather is getting warmer when it feels like it and we switch to shorter pants just as the insects begin to multiply. It is a magical time of year that some of us will see for the last time in State College. For those lucky few, not going to class this week is a sign of maturity. With a college degree ensured, the world awaits you. Unless you’re in the Liberal Arts, of course. Then, your mother’s couch awaits you. However, there exist among us the ones that dare to take it to the next level. The ones that can’t get enough binge drinking, construction, and parking citations. The ones that will never graduate. How do they do it? Very, very smugly. These are the keys to never leaving Penn State.

Playboy Says PSU is 2nd Best at Partying

PSU Presses Start on Video Game Class

Athletics

Penn State Hockey Releases 2018-19 Roster

Brett Murray is no longer on the team after an uneventful tenure in Happy Valley that saw him score just one goal in 33 games.

Penn State Women’s Soccer Sophomores Start Season Strong

Penn State Women’s Soccer Beats Duquesne 6-0

Shea Moyer Lifts Penn State Women’s Soccer Past West Virginia 1-0

Penn State Women’s Soccer Poised For Strong 2018 Season

Student Life

Staff Picks: Grabbing A Drink With A Prominent Penn Stater

If you had the chance to hear about Penn State from (or throw down at a State College bar for a night with) some of its most prominent figures, who would you want to grab a beer with?

Freshman 101: Helpful Links

Nominations Now Open For Gender-Neutral Homecoming Court

Plans Submitted For New KFC In State College

Developers have submitted preliminary land development plans to build a new KFC restaurant at 1780 S. Atherton St. in State College.

Mayor Don Hahn Plans To Veto Overnight Parking Restrictions In Highlands Neighborhood

Those in favor of the ordinance plan to consider overturning the veto at a special meeting next Monday.

While You Were Gone…

Here’s a roundup of what went on around Penn State during summer break.

Be the first to know

  • Top posts and the best Penn State stories

Thank you for subscribing.

Something went wrong.

Staff Picks: Grabbing A Drink With A Prominent Penn Stater

If you had the chance to hear about Penn State from (or throw down at a State College bar for a night with) some of its most prominent figures, who would you want to grab a beer with?

Send this to a friend