Watch a new PBS special on the history of hip-hop


In the new PBS series Fight the Power: How Hip Hop Changed the World, host Chuck D of Public Enemy explores hip-hop’s political awakening over the last 50 years.

“Hip-hop became our voice that was for so long silenced,” Chuck D says in the series trailer (above).

Along with Chuck D, the four-part series includes a range of musicians (Ice Cube, MC Lyte, Melle Mel, and Fat Joe, among others) and cultural commentators to help track the genre’s socially conscious roots.

PBS highlights the episodes below:

Episode 1 | The Foundation

Discover the factors that led to the birth of Hip Hop and its first socially conscious hit “The Message” by Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five in 1982.

Episode 2 | Under Siege

Explore the 1980s and the birth of Hip Hop as social commentary in the Reagan Era with the emergence of artists like Public Enemy, KRS-One, Ice-T, and NWA.

Episode 3 | Culture Wars

Experience the 1990s during the Clinton years and the unstoppable rise in popularity of Hip Hop, which becomes a force that is attacked by all sides of the political establishment.

Episode 4 | Still Fighting

Follow the evolution of Hip Hop as its artists turn into multimillionaires and successful entrepreneurs. As a cultural phenomenon, Hip Hop continues to change history and is adopted as the voice of protest around the world.

Local air dates and times are available on the PBS website. If you’re in Northern Colorado and have access to Rocky Mountain PBS, the viewing times and dates shown below.

Select episodes of the series are also now streaming on YouTube.


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