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This chapter examines the use and performance of hip hop by the British Columbian artist Wayde Compton to channel and rearticulate local black history and diasporic subjectivities in works such as 49th Parallel Psalm and Performance Bond. Inspired by a long tradition of jazz and blues poetry, Compton relies on hip hop turning transformative “lit hop” in a socially and locally anchored yet transcultural aesthetics that both consumes and transforms its materials in improvisational performance. The DJ’s improvisation over fixed tracks becomes Compton’s model for the performing subject’s agency with respect to historiography, leading to the remixing of black diasporic subjectivities, time, and history. The author focuses on Compton’s use of turntablism as both performative mode and musical metaphor for the improvising subject’s counter-discursive agency at the crossings.

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