“To Pimp a Butterfly”: Kendrick Lamar’s unapologetic black American dream

March 18, 2015 11:00 PM

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The brand new version of Kanye might be rocking a mask and mounting his success on white trophies, but K. Dot isn’t — white acknowledgement doesn’t hold much weight in his art. Lamar, who is 27, entered onto the scene in 2011 and is acutely aware of the game. He would rather be completely real, mindful of dangerous double-consciousness and bringing to bear the weight of being black.

In “Mortal Man,” the last track of the album, Lamar explains the album’s title: “The butterfly represents the talent, the thoughtfulness, and the beauty in the caterpillar. / But having a harsh outlook on life / the caterpillar sees that the butterfly as weak / and figures out a way to pimp it for i...

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