Cultural Studies of Science Education

, Volume 6, Issue 1, pp 49-76

First online:

Rap as a roadway: creating creolized forms of science in an era of cultural globalization

  • Rowhea ElmeskyAffiliated withWashington University in St. Louis Email author 

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Even during an era of cultural globalization where diversity, hybridity, and heterogeneity prevail, educational institutions remain unchanged and economically and racially marginalized students continue to experience a sense of exclusion in school. Whereas the science education community often addresses such exclusion in terms of the achievement gap or the lack of materials and qualified teachers in urban schools, there are also more subtle ways in which these students remain as outsiders to the culture of science. The study highlights how the acceptance and affordance of students’ cultural capital can encourage a sense of belonging with school science. Specifically, this paper contributes to the literature by sharing longitudinal findings that reveal students’ skills of orality, in the form of rap practices, can be rich resources for developing creolized forms of school science, and how rap creates entryways for students to form and reform hybridized identities in which canonical science discourse and lyrics about non-science subjects can begin to emerge in integrated, fluid and seamless manners.


Creolized science Hybridized identities Hip-hop