St. Louis, MO – Pressor Jeffrey McCune, who teaches a course on rapper Kanye West at Washington University in St. Louis, will be using his third and final lecture on the controversial rapper to study West’s 2016 breakdown and hospitalization, as well as the response that followed.
In a class titled Name One Genius That Ain’t Crazy: Kanye West and the Politics Self-Diagnosis, Pressor McCune has said he will use Kanye as a case study on how society at large perceives mental illness. Hypebeast reports McCune as saying “ultimately what I’m getting at in this lecture is not just about Kanye, it’s also about the larger notion crazy and how we utilize it.”
“I want to give people permission to be enraged,” he continues. “Give people permission to be upset, to be angry, to be frustrated. Give people permission to have moments where they break. Give people permission to have moments where they experience depression. I want to give them permission to have those moments without being characterized as being some type dent figure in the community.”
McCune further expressed his belief that incidents such as Kanye’s meltdown on stage in Sacramento should be “addressed with love, care, and generosity.”
Kanye’s collaborators have also discussed Yeezy’s mental health openly in the past. Rhymefest, who worked on songs like “Jesus Walks,” walked away from West in early 2016 saying that “his mind and spirit isn’t right” and “my brother needs help, in the form counseling Spiritual & mental. He should step away from the public & yes-men & heal.”
The free lecture will be held on Wednesday, April 12 at 6 p.m. in the Emerson Auditorium at Washington University in St. Louis and is open to the public.