H. Samy Alim is an Associate Professor of Education and (by courtesy) Anthropology and Linguistics, and serves as the Faculty Director for the Institute for Diversity in the Arts and Committee on Black Performing Arts. He also serves as the Director of African & African American Studies, a program through which students may choose a major or minor concentration in IDA (identity, diversity and aesthetics).
Professor Alim is an affiliate of the Center for Comparative Studies in Race & Ethnicity, with broad research interests in language, race, popular culture and education. Since receiving his B.A. from the University of Pennsylvania, and his M.A. and Ph.D. from Stanford University, Alim has held a deep commitment to developing university-community relationships through research that explores the links between youth art, language and culture, and education and social justice for socially marginalized groups
Former editor of The Black Arts Quarterly, his research on the anthropology, sociolinguistics, and verbal art of Hip Hop Culture has appeared in a broad range of journals, from American Speech, The Journal of English Linguistics, Pragmatics, and The Journal of Linguistic Anthropology to B'ma: The Sonia Sanchez Literary Review, Callaloo, Souls, and The Black Arts Quarterly (ed. two special issues on Hip Hop Culture in the US and international contexts, 2001), as well as numerous book chapters.
Alim’s most recent books include Global Linguistic Flows: Hip Hop Culture(s), youth identities, and the politics of language (Routledge, 2009) and Roc the mic right: The Language of Hip Hop Culture (Routledge, 2006). He is also author of You know my steez: An ethnographic and sociolinguistic study of a Black American speech community (Duke University Press, 2004) and co-author of Street conscious rap (Black History Museum Press, 1999) and Tha Global Cipha: Hip Hop Culture and Consciousness (Black History Museum, 2006). Alim has lectured on Global Hip Hop Cultures in institutions as diverse as the American University in Cairo and Berlin’s Haus der Kulturen der Welt to East Palo Alto’s Mural Music and Arts Project and the American University in Beirut.
His forthcoming book, Articulate While Black: Barack Obama, Language, and Race in the U.S., with Geneva Smitherman, will appear on Oxford University Press in Fall 2012.