Editors’ Notes Contemporary stars like Kanye West, Wale, and Kendrick Lamar who blur the lines between conscious and mainstream rap are following a path that Mos Def helped pioneer in the ‘90s, making unapologetic black pride accessible. And his genre-bending ways of connecting rap with other strains of black American music have been carried on by other singing MCs like Chance the Rapper and Childish Gambino.

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