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Love and Hip Hop Academia: The Michael Eric Dyson Takedown of Cornel West

CHILEEEEEEE… listen. You know I love me a good read and wig snatch. Well it was served up on a platter last night when The New Republic released an essay, penned by Dr. Michael Eric Dyson. It was titled “The Ghost of Cornel West and it was a 10,000 word epic takedown of the Afro’ed Intellectual that many respect and some revere. It is the talk of social media right now because so much tea was spilled.

Let the record show that I am neither Team Dyson nor Team West. I am Jon Snow (I know nothing) to the intricacies of Black Academia. I am not in that space so I am going off what I read here and the little I’ve known before.

Cornel West Michael Eric Dyson

What are my thoughts on the whole thing? I’m glad you didn’t ask, because I have questions.

* What made Michael Eric Dyson write this piece right now?

Again, I know I am not on their jock to know what both are up to enough but what made Dyson drop this ETHER at this moment? I know that West has come for him hard in the past so it ain’t crazy out of the blue but I’m trying to figure out what made him do it right now.

* What is Dyson trying to gain from this?

Is this just to even the score on whatever West has said about him in the past? I want to know the purpose. And this isn’t even a rhetorical question. Feel free to leave a comment about it.

* Why Did Dyson choose The New Republic as the outlet for this?

The New Republic is not known for being a publication with a large Black readership. There’s a lot of white gaze here and I wonder why MED thought it was the right place to hash out this beef with his former mentor. I kinda feel like DAMB. This is family business. Do it at the reunion, not while you’re at the country club.

* Did anyone else feel like they were snooping?

Dr. Dyson’s piece makes some very valid points about Dr. West, exploring West’s fall from grace, especially his fall out with President Obama. You don’t have to like the man’s policy but holding a personal grudge stemming from you not getting inauguration tickets is definitely worthy of being told to occupy a seat. And the bit about him leaving Barack voicemails from a blocked number had me cackling. I won’t even lie.


However, this piece felt intensely personal. I was like “Should I be reading this?” I feel like he meant to send this as an email and accidentally published it. This is also why I thought the piece was petty. This takedown was so detailed and included so many extra info that sounded like when someone is telling you about their day and they could have left out 5 of the stories because they weren’t really essential. I pictured Dyson at his computer slamming on the keyboard as he said “AND THEN HE TOLD ME…”

Dyson even talked about how West does not have a good relationship with women. Sir, you REALLY went in. How did you get here? Nobody’s s’posed to be here.

* Why is this piece longer than the dead sea scrolls?

LAWDT. I do not enjoy reading from academics who write everything like it’s a dissertation. This thing took me even longer to read because I kept having to look up the meaning of words. It was WORK getting through it. Michael Eric Dyson spent 10,000 words (yes, really) ripping into Cornel West. My main issue with it is that it took so many words. Why did he write a mini book on this topic when he could have accomplished the same thing in less time and space?

Longest Hour gif

It really did take me like an hour to read this joint.

Dyson spent 10K words telling us West is mad at Obama, past his prime, a hypocrite AND a perpetual shit-talker. He coulda done that in 3K and saved us all some time. I’m saying. People gotta learn to be less verbose. Ol’ pontificating intellectuals. Too smart to not talk too much.

* Why did I get my LIFE from some of the quotes, though?

Dyson put on his Petty Pants and went in on Dr. West throughout the piece so tough and I cackled MANY times. Even in my annoyance about length, I was chewing popcorn and going DAMMMMBBBBBBBB as I read along. Ain’t no shade like Black intellectual shade because Black intellectual shade can’t stop, won’t stop and will do it in long sentences and MCAT words.

Let’s pull out some of my favorites.

“As a freelancing, itinerant, nonordained, self-anointed prophet, West has only to answer to himself.”

FREELANCING. PROPHET. LMAOOOO he called him a 1099, net-45 plan having, invoice sending, ain’t tied to nothing prophet. I can’t even. That is beautiful shade.

Guurrrlll owl gif

“He is in The Matrix sequels, doing something he’s become tragicomically good at—playing an unintentional caricature of his identity.”

Son. He called him a cartoon, basically. I mean, yeah it’s kinda accurate. Still… HA!

“West is still a Man of Ideas, but those ideas today are a vain and unimaginative repackaging of his earlier hits.”

He told him his shit is old and he’s basically plagiarizing himself. CHEI! See life.

“In truth, West is a scold, a curmudgeonly and bitter critic who has grown long in the tooth but sharp in the tongue when lashing.”

GAHTDAMB, DAWG. This is also especially shady because Cornel’s teeth are big. Also, “long in the tooth, sharp in the tongue” is phenomenal verbage. Old school but classic.

“West had a huge crush on the R&B singer Anita Baker, and I got us tickets to see her perform in New Jersey. After a brief backstage introduction to the singer I had finagled, West relived his high school track glory and sprinted up the street in glee.”

LMAO! Really? How did this add to it? All he wanted to do was have us picture West sprinting in his suit with his dry afro floating in joy. See? Petty as hell.

But. My favorite thing about the entire piece is the closing line. Because I am a connoisseur of prose that is direct, un-crass but powerful in its ability to verbally chin check it’s subject. Dyson ended his diatribe beautifully with:

“His greatest opponent isn’t Obama, Sharpton, Harris-Perry, or me. It is the ghost of a self that spits at him from his own mirror.” 

faints gif

This was me

HOLY. SHIT. I just have to applaud Dyson for that line. That line is deserving of a slow clap because it was Mortal Kombat “FINISH EM!” I actually said “OUCH” out loud. Whew. We gon see Dr. West rocking a fade haircut. Know that it’s because Dr. Dyson came for his entire edges and he had to even things out.

This was a drag, though. A PURE DRAG that left a bad taste in my mouth for both Dyson and West. I don’t know what Dyson’s point was in writing this piece. But for me, it started looking like the Pot was calling the Kettle egotistical. BOFADEM need to have some seats, in my opinion.

I’m just here for the shade and there was an Amazon forest of it in that piece. On a Petty Literature scale of 0 to Your Mama Ain’t Shit, I’d give this an 8.5. For those of us who are Shady Savants and Studiers of the Art of Side-Eye, we must appreciate it for it’s dedication to the craft of Petty. It is Wig Snatching 505.

nene Read Hunny gif

What happens next? This is like Love and Hip Hop Academia so will there be a reunion where John Salley hosts poorly? Will Cornel West drop a diss record? Will Michael Eric Dyson do an audiotape version of this where he does that annoying rap-talk combo he’s good for?

I’ma be on the lookout. You know I like gist.

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  1. KMN
    April 20, 2015 at 11:14 am

    Luvvie, you had me DYING with this post. I am going to read it tonight before bed because i might need a little something to fall asleep to. HOWEVER lmao…he could’ve written this about West, Sharpton, Smiley (and SMiley used to be MAH MAYNE)…it’s like they LL Cool Jed and went republican…iowno…it’s a sad day in Black Academia when two powerhouses in the studies of the Diaspora are playing hoodrat twitter games with each other and snapchatting disses and ish…

    • LadyLarke
      April 20, 2015 at 11:24 am

      “playing hoodrat twitter games…” You had me at hello. LOL

    • April 20, 2015 at 3:49 pm

      “snapchatting disses and ish”

      Jesus save me, because I’ve passed on! #icant

    • Petranilla
      April 20, 2015 at 5:48 pm

      “hoodrat twitter games with each other and snapchatting disses and ish”
      THEE BEST ONE!!!!!!!!!!

    • Sha
      April 21, 2015 at 10:13 am

      Rotfl!!! Yaasss to this 😉

  2. Shar
    April 20, 2015 at 11:14 am

    Yassss girl, I got my whole entire life this morning reading all the shade of shadiness in shadesville. This right here was the slap heard around the world….”Thus the left-wing critic found it unjust that the workingman and not the professor had a ticket to the inauguration. Only in a world where bankers and other fat cats greedily gobble rewards meant for everyday citizens would such a reversal appear unfair. J.P. Morgan might have been mad; Karl Marx would have been ecstatic” – #pow

    • Kesha
      April 20, 2015 at 12:41 pm

      Yes Shar, yes! That was the shadiest comment of them all!

  3. John
    April 20, 2015 at 11:19 am

    The New Republican is under new management and included in that management is Senior Editor Jamil Smith, who used to produce the Melissa Harris Perry Show on MSNBC.

    • Joy n L.A
      April 20, 2015 at 12:03 pm

      Well there it is!

    • Marie Lou
      April 20, 2015 at 12:11 pm

      ooh. good insight!

    • Me Talk Pretty
      April 20, 2015 at 2:24 pm

      OOOOHHHHH!!!! Well that was some tasty tea spilled right there. An MPH connection. You sir win a Gossip Detective Dime Droppers award off that one. Much deserved too, might I add.

    • Max
      April 20, 2015 at 2:28 pm

      Didn’t MHP already have a clapback session at The Nation on Cornel’s doing the most and least self? Wait, Dyson spilled the tea on that in that loooooooong ass screed. Oh well. #nerdlandrepresent

      • Me Talk Pretty
        April 20, 2015 at 2:46 pm

        Yes child, and West promptly ran her the hell out of Princeton. Those were highly entertaining times. But she did end up on MSNBC so it all worked out for the best for her. But when it happened… whew!

        • Julia
          April 20, 2015 at 6:25 pm

          West first organized the ENTIRE Black poli-sci faculty against MHP to deny her tenure at Princeton. I think everyone with the exception of one person voted against her receiving tenure. He called her “intellectually lazy,” which those that have read her writing and watch her show know is untrue. The whole situation was actually quite sexist. The MHP clapback came as a result of West’s whack manuevering.

        • April 24, 2015 at 11:54 am

          Ive always said, ” we are our own worst enemy”. I keep hearing the word “intellectual”, are we sure thats what he is? Cause I see clearly through the BS. Cornel aint fooling nobody with this one.

        • Max
          April 20, 2015 at 9:34 pm

          Oooooooh! He’s how she ended up at Tulane. I think MED spilled that tea too.

        • Colleen Abdul Jabbar
          April 22, 2015 at 6:35 am

          And let us all bow our heads for a moment of silence and contemplate the fact MHP business was spilled all over these skreets when various news outlets ran her tax troubles with the IRS an em to anyone who cared to read

          It was sanctimoniously reported that MHP and her huzzzzband owe over $70,000 to the tax man…right before Dyson’s 10,000 word tantrum was released to the masses like Mike Tyson’s pigeons.

          Fly away birdies!!! Be freeeee!!!

  4. Kay
    April 20, 2015 at 11:20 am

    This piece is what those fools that leave novella-length one star reviews on Yelp aspire to. Dr. MED is America’s Next Top Yelp Reviewer.

    That last line tho. Even my eyebrows are singed.

    • Natashia
      April 20, 2015 at 11:45 am

      I love you for this. Too many dam words!

    • April 20, 2015 at 12:28 pm


  5. April 20, 2015 at 11:23 am

    The New Republic’s editor must have been reading this with popcorn and giggles too. However as my Mama used to say, “It have more in the mortar than the pestle.” People don’t crank out a 10k word Klitschko knockout just for so. The bacchanal now start.

    • Joy n L.A
      April 20, 2015 at 12:05 pm

      Word. “Let’s get ready to rumble!!”

    • KayMee
      April 20, 2015 at 12:29 pm

      You had me at the “bacchanal now start!” Yep, it’s about to get DUTTY!

    • April 20, 2015 at 12:29 pm

      i love that you said bacchanal.

    • Sade
      April 20, 2015 at 1:43 pm

      YOU MUST BE TRINI ! I love you for bacchanal and the mortar reference.

      • Brenda
        April 20, 2015 at 10:35 pm

        Love, thinking the very said thing. Lol

      • Kathy-Ann
        April 22, 2015 at 6:30 am

        You read my mind lol. Was about to reply that she must be Trini! HA

    • KayPea
      April 22, 2015 at 1:18 am


  6. Chanel King
    April 20, 2015 at 11:26 am

    As soon as I learn to appropriately pronounce curmudgeonly without having to sound it out in syllables, that is becoming a part of my everyday speech. Everyone at work, regardless of gender, will be a curmudgeon.

  7. Ms. E. Cheree
    April 20, 2015 at 11:36 am

    Ok. I’m glad I’m not the only one who had to keep stopping to look up words on dictionary dot com. This thang was long for no reason. Had to watch my eyelids for 15 Minutes in order to get through it all.

    • Jen Jen
      April 21, 2015 at 1:26 pm

      Girl, it was long for the most logical reason of all–because Michael Eric Dyson.

  8. renee
    April 20, 2015 at 11:37 am

    he said “extravagant excoriations”. MCAT words!!!

  9. Keli
    April 20, 2015 at 11:43 am

    Lordt………waaaaaaaaay too much menstruation from OUR leaders in academia. It almost seems like a lovers quarrel gone horribly wrong. Shady Grady vs. Petty McNasty is a lose lose situation for all involved. Check this old piece about Sir Petty wanting to be Jesus H. Christ.

    • KB
      April 20, 2015 at 5:06 pm

      Lol@ Shady Grady & Petty McNasty…….cackling!

  10. KayMac
    April 20, 2015 at 11:59 am

    Daaaaaammmmmmnnnnn, son!!!!! Look, I got my life just from reading your favorites….Dr. Dyson threw ALLLLA Dr. West’s bizness out in the streets, though…word to Anita Baker!!! I’ll be waiting for Dr. West’s diss track, ala “Meet Me in Temecula”…I’m ready!!!

    • April 20, 2015 at 12:30 pm

      NOT TEMECULA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  11. April 20, 2015 at 11:59 am

    Oh, he didn’t JUST write this. He’s been working on this opus for six months of Sundays.

    • whilome
      April 20, 2015 at 7:08 pm

      Right?!!! He had this rant on google.docs just autosaving every night.

  12. April 20, 2015 at 12:00 pm

    Oh, he didn’t just write this. Marty McPetty has been working on this opus for six months of Sundays.

  13. Marie Lou
    April 20, 2015 at 12:03 pm

    I pictured Dyson at his computer slamming on the keyboard as he said “AND THEN HE TOLD ME…” —–*dying laughing*!!!!…. will now continue reading…

  14. Teri
    April 20, 2015 at 12:16 pm

    I am on the train snorting. “Dry afro floating in joy”. I am out of control.

    • Tonia
      April 20, 2015 at 8:43 pm

      I cackled out loud at that cmment too!!

  15. Nikki Bee
    April 20, 2015 at 12:23 pm

    Honestly all MED needed was this gif, Luvvie already had it prepped for him: https://awesomeluvvie.wpengine.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/ThrowbackOld.gif

    • KayMee
      April 20, 2015 at 12:32 pm

      Nikki Bee. That is perfect! That gif could have saved New Republic and MED like 9,993 words.

  16. emmesbabygirl
    April 20, 2015 at 12:24 pm

    That’s it, petty. I was embarrassed for West, Dyson and every woman mentioned in this piece. Some things can just go unsaid, which was every word of this piece. Dyson won’t see it though; his ego is as big as West’s. SMH.

  17. M
    April 20, 2015 at 12:30 pm

    As a nerd forced to exist in a 140 character world I’m here for this extended loquacious read. My brain is smoking a cigarette and will be giggling at random times for weeks cause it was THAT good.

    • Jen Jen
      April 21, 2015 at 1:33 pm

      I had to take a walk after reading that piece yesterday. My brain needed time to digest the words and the shade. Woo!

  18. Gloria Yamato
    April 20, 2015 at 12:32 pm

    Thank you for this and the owl. I did try to read Dyson’s article and just skimming at 5K words. By then it was clear that a highly skilled sh*t-sling was going down. Your questions and comments smoothed my deeply furrowed brow and better; I holla’d

  19. Phi Diva
    April 20, 2015 at 12:38 pm

    The attack seems very timely to me. Dr. Cornel West has been leading the African America attack on President Obama. Someone needs to put all of West’s canned negativity towards President Obama into perspective OR back in the darn can. IN order to have the opportunity to make a successful run, the next Democratic candidate for president will need to run off the premise of expanding the gains President Obama has already made. Should the Democrats prevail it will be because they were able to quiet the naysayers.

    The last thing Hillary needs right now is a pint-sized replica of Don King bashing the Obama Administration when she is trying to lean on some of it—especially with that being her main tie to the African American community.

    • Marcus
      April 20, 2015 at 3:43 pm

      “Pint-size replica of Don King?” You. Did. NOT.

  20. Ella
    April 20, 2015 at 12:43 pm

    All I could think as I read this was “who you fitna try??? I betcha ain’t me!!! CAPS CAPS CAPS”

    • Shaleen
      April 21, 2015 at 12:45 pm

      Lol I love that vine

  21. April 20, 2015 at 1:01 pm

    My favorite quote about west——>it would be fitting for West to downsize his ambition and accept his role as a public intellectual, social gadfly, or merely a paid pest.

    I really wonder what straw broke this camel’s back.

    • Denise
      April 20, 2015 at 8:55 pm

      YES!!! That comment gave me my whole life and the next one too.

  22. Tarah
    April 20, 2015 at 1:02 pm

    Note to self: Never ask MED to show me the receipts!
    He will – in triplicate, carbon copy, via facsimile.
    He told errythang he evah knew about Cornel.

  23. Tarah
    April 20, 2015 at 1:05 pm

    Wayminnit…Obama cussed West out?II. And there are pics?!! Them damn receipts though, MED!!!
    *still reading

  24. Matador1015
    April 20, 2015 at 1:10 pm

    This Dyson takedown is like the intellectual equivalent of a fight video on WorldStarHipHop. Equally productive, as well.

    • howlingbanshee
      April 24, 2015 at 10:22 am

      ^^^There it is, right there.
      The truth.

  25. Shaun
    April 20, 2015 at 1:10 pm

    This right here gave me at least two centuries of LIIFFFEE!!! Did you say 8.5??!?!?! I’m Holllerin’!

  26. Tamara
    April 20, 2015 at 1:12 pm

    Luvvie, YOUR last paragraph is better than Dyson’s.
    “…Will Cornel West drop a diss record? Will Michael Eric Dyson do an audiotape version of this where he does that annoying rap-talk combo he’s good for?…” Talk about shade!

  27. RaeJ
    April 20, 2015 at 1:31 pm

    Meanwhile Todd Boyd is somewhere snickering to himself.

    • April 20, 2015 at 5:14 pm

      RaeJ – you KNOW he did a video last night, right?? I could only listen to the first 2 of the 26 MINUTES you tube vid.

      • RaeJ
        April 20, 2015 at 5:46 pm

        Lawd!! **off to You Tube**

  28. April 20, 2015 at 1:40 pm

    Cornel: Here’s why you aren’t my friend no mo’. You old and talk too much.–Love Michael

    • cori
      April 20, 2015 at 4:29 pm

      So funny…that about sums it up!!

  29. […] this just to even the score on whatever West has said about him in the past?" wrote cultural critic and digital strategist Luvvie Ajayi. "I want to know the purpose. And this […]

  30. notconvincedgranny
    April 20, 2015 at 1:46 pm

    Mr. Dyson has an advanced case of “always a bridesmaid, never a bride” syndrome, and has been more than a little salty since Dr. West gained audience with Obama and he did not. They also didn’t agree on the subject of disenfranchised young black men (Mr. D blames society; Dr.W said that’s true but getting kicked down doesn’t mean stay down). Eric believes Obama, as a trailblazer, should not be publicly criticized, while Cornel believes because he is a trailblazer black people should make sure he remains on the right trail. Add to that that when Mr. D steps into a room people say who dat? and when Dr. W comes in it’s hey bro, where you been? and Mr. Dyson becomes just another pissy bitch with a thesaurus. Sad, because I love ’em both.

    • Lola
      April 20, 2015 at 2:10 pm

      Some inadvertent (or not) shade against Dr. Dyson?

      • Clever Bev
        April 20, 2015 at 3:03 pm

        I agree with you, Lola. It seems that “notconvinced” doth protest too much, ’cause “Mr.” is, in fact, “Dr.,” and plenty of people know who he is when he walks into a room. If they weren’t in a position to know, then they’d probably be in a different room. When Dr. W walks into a room, there may be people who say “Where you been?” because they want him to go back there quickly (it could happen) and silently (not a chance.)

        • notconvincedgranny
          April 20, 2015 at 4:57 pm

          You’re both wrong. Turn in your sidewalk psych degrees. If I were to parse your statements I’d come to the conclusion you are Dyson stans and everything West does is wrong (see how easy it is?) It’s just to differentiate them from each other, nicknames if you will. And I’ve followed their soap opera from the beginning, and attended events where both have spoken, whether individually or together. Yes, they used to be on the same page, but the disagreement has turned personal and gotten out of hand.

      • Jen Jen
        April 21, 2015 at 1:38 pm

        I love that this thread has devolved into “whose PhD is the longest.”

  31. Max
    April 20, 2015 at 2:25 pm

    How much you want to bet that Cornel is gonna head to the booth to drop a mixtape about Dyson produced by the other cat named West who I also don’t see it for? Cause you know both Wests about about stunts and shows. This shit is messy and about to get messier.

  32. Me Talk Pretty
    April 20, 2015 at 2:43 pm

    I may or may not have had reason to actually deal with these two gentlemen in my travels around academia. Perhaps. And I may or may not can confirm (or deny?) that they both have egos the size of Kanye multiplied by Breezy and squared by JayZ with a multiplier of “Damn, son?”. I’m just saying. Or not.

    Lest you think black female public intellectuals are any better… I may or may not confirm that they ain’t. At all. Well not most of them anyway. Well at least not some ringing coat hanger named ones. Oooh, child. LOL

    Famous academic of any race or discipline can be handfuls. Not always. But perhaps. I mean, if I was able to confirm such things.

    In any Brotha West has been on a mission to take down other black intellectuals who are not agreeing with him about Brotha Obama for a minute, and in the process he said some not nice things about Brotha Dyson, and I believe Brotha Dyson has flipped his lid and gotten extra pettilicious, trying to dress up his hurt feelings in 10,000 pounds of scholarly verbage masking many personal shots, which is ironically the same thing Brotha West has been accused of doing to the President. So yes, they both look pretty hypocritical right now.

    I’m making jokes but honestly I find the whole thing depressing.

    • RaeJ
      April 20, 2015 at 5:54 pm

      Ohhhhh….Hot tea coming right up! LOL! “Ringing coat hanger named ones” **wink wink**

      Oh how I miss working in higher ed.

  33. NiaSoul01
    April 20, 2015 at 2:45 pm

    I have a very strong desire to listen to Biggie’s “What’s Beef?” now.

  34. blackprofessor
    April 20, 2015 at 4:01 pm

    As a Black academic, I find this whole incident disgusting! Handle your differences in private, not in front of the whole world. We are paid intellectuals so academics don’t always agree with each other but there is a way to handle differences. This is very ugly and I am ashamed for both of them.

  35. SN Bush
    April 20, 2015 at 5:20 pm


    O___||______ (passed out dead)

  36. Rae
    April 20, 2015 at 6:17 pm

    Luvvie you wild…LoL…Thank you for the summary because I didn’t get through all of it (only 8 hours in my work day and I wasn’t reading it in my “leisure”)…

  37. Hagar
    April 20, 2015 at 10:15 pm

    Both of these über-intellectual fools make me tired, soundin like a bromance what went souf. If you don’t like his politics, Michael, that’s fine, baby boo, but why you talmbout his crush choke with Anita Baker, who ain’t studying either Cornell with his desperate need for Luster’s Pink Oil and anti-hater vaccine or you with your desperate need for off-brand corn chips and insulin or either of you with your desperate need for external validation? And FYI, we are all so over both of you and Skip Gates; now we are all solidly on the scrote of Neil Degrasse Tyson. So both all y’all go join Ser Jorah Mormont and Ser Keef Sweat in the Kingdom of No Longer Relevant and have a seat.

    • Heha
      April 20, 2015 at 11:41 pm


    • April 21, 2015 at 10:58 am

      “we are all solidly on the scrote of Neil Degrasse Tyson”


      made my damn day. Hat’s off and curtisies to you sir/ma’am

    • notconvincedgranny
      April 21, 2015 at 10:26 pm

      dis. right heah.

  38. Lincoln
    April 21, 2015 at 12:32 am

    Not ashamed to admit I ‘stan for #MED, and got life from every word of this letter.

    I used to read West’s books, but he had kind of faded from my view. The second he came for Melissa-Harris Perry, all wide-eyed and gnashing his butthurt, he had to go. MHP is smart, does her politics with an accountability I don’t see much on news folks, and writes deep reads that are easy on non-PHD brains.

    And all this whining at our president..West sounds like a jilted mistress. It’s not cute. He needs to have several seats.

    Luvvie…as usual, your recaps make my days bright!

  39. April 21, 2015 at 1:14 am

    The academic dozens!!! Shame on both of them. Brevity , pragmatism, knowledge and common sense lends to a rapt audience. BTW: As a retired baby boomer human rights activist; I love this blog. The ‘younguns’ are doing it!!

  40. April 21, 2015 at 1:21 am

    Listen, I’m a connoisseur of shade and wig snatching but reading that long azz rant made me weary! Surely there was a shorter way to tell West that he needs to get it together.

    Dyson could have taken a page from Dennis Christopher Brigham the Sunday Best contestant who got those rude judges straight for laughing during his audition. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t63TIJ0u_NA

    MED could have just said, “Cornel West, I been stopped liking you! You are so rude and disrespectful.” He could have been done in about 1000 words and my eyes would not be glazing over.

    Let me find out that Corny is a name dropper, and he actually endorsed that terrible movie Bulworth starring Halle Berry and Warren Beatty where that fool was rapping about “The nappy dugout” and she tells him that he’s her N-word for life. No sir. Embracing that sort of nonsense alone should mean that your Black intellectual card is instantly revoked.

    The whole thing is petty, but the way that West has been going after the President needed to be addressed with him and Tavis Smiley going around acting like a couple of jilted lovers. And I now I am going to have to check out Jonathan Alter’s book because if he is dishing tea about my President cussing folks out then I need more details.

  41. […] West” isn’t gone after all. Dyson’s piece has drawn its own critiques, from his decision on where to publish it, to his comparison of West to Mike Tyson, to the personal content within. There’s more than meets […]

  42. Greg Thrasher
    April 21, 2015 at 10:32 am

    Dyson’s personal assault on West was a public betrayal that leaves me and other Black activists reeling with anger and disappointment.

    To observe Dyson published his rage filled narrative on a site (TNR) which for decades have contempt for anything Black and was an advocate for the Bell Curve and the theme that Black Americans are genetically inferior wounds me deep since Dyson is also a brother from Detroit…WTF

  43. April 21, 2015 at 10:51 am

    Your assessment of this Dyson bitch slap of West is off. the. chain. As an academic/intellectual, even I know we need to get called on our ish. Thanks for the laughs.

  44. April 21, 2015 at 11:13 am

    This was epic airing of dirty laundry, like MIchael Eric Dyson was strutting around wearing his underpants on the outside of his wrangler jeans. Mz Luvvie this “All he wanted to do was have us picture West sprinting in his suit with his dry afro floating in joy. See? Petty as hell.” had me laughing and trying not to fall off the bed. “The Battle of the Bloviators” has commenced children.

  45. djjones
    April 21, 2015 at 11:48 am

    Dyson came for West, put him in a rhetorical headlock, and picked his afro with a fine-toothed comb. That snapping and crackling you heard in the piece was the conspicuous absence of pink lotion, Afro Sheen, or any other moistening agent. In other words, he gave it to him raw.

    • ynnon
      April 24, 2015 at 11:35 am

      Guize, you have no chill! Respect your elders!

  46. Cindy
    April 21, 2015 at 12:08 pm

    Disagree, MED’s detailed review was necessary. It was done in public not behind closed doors, because the Hate shouted at the president was public and unalleviated.
    It helps explain some things to millions who don’t use a label to describe themselves (black activist) just concerned

  47. Silver
    April 21, 2015 at 1:06 pm

    I don’t feel one bit betrayed by Dyson. West, whose work I have admired in the past, has done enough nonsense when it comes to the President that if Dyson had just kept it to that, it would have been more than enough of a rejoinder. It didn’t need the personal reveals or the length. That was way extra. As to the beef theory, I think his 10k response was part personal redress, part public remedy to West’s campaign against the president, thinly disguised as needed critique. Somebody needed to say something. As to timing, I have a feeling we haven’t heard the last of West’s critiques as we go into the next election, so this might just be a pre-emptive strike.

  48. Serenity
    April 21, 2015 at 2:27 pm

    Who’s next? Skip Gates?

  49. Nakia Gladden
    April 21, 2015 at 3:10 pm

    “Why is this piece longer than the dead sea scrolls?” Hilarious!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  50. djjones
    April 21, 2015 at 3:12 pm


    Please, please, baby, baby PLEASE stage your own black public intellectual shade throwing tournament. Your Final Four matchups should have me panting for air like I have COPD. I’m counting on you, Luvvie.

  51. Mamajama
    April 21, 2015 at 3:15 pm

    Dyson always uses 10 long words to say what most of us say in 4 short words. He’s so verbose. If the missive had been less than 10,000 words, I would have been surprised.

  52. kerrita k.
    April 21, 2015 at 4:40 pm

    this animosity isn’t news to me. and while i do wonder what med got in the mail to make him write this screed – at least now i have someone to blame for that crap movie Bullworth!

  53. Shay DeShade
    April 21, 2015 at 6:10 pm

    “Wig Snatching 505”

    DEAD. Please lay me out with my good purple hat.

  54. KamarA
    April 21, 2015 at 7:14 pm

    Keep up the great work Luuvie!!!

  55. […] 3. Love and Hip Hop Academia- The Michael Eric Dyson Takedown of Cornel West- AwesomelyLuvvie.com. If you’ve spent anytime on the Internet or social media within the last couple of days, you’ve probably heard about the epic article by scholar Michael Eric Dyson: “The Ghost of Cornel West”. Clocking in at 10,000 words, the shade-filled piece has Dyson going in on academic Cornel West like a root canal. Obvi, “The Ghost” is worth reading, but 10,000 words are a bit verbose. (I still haven’t finished it.)   If you can’t commit to that, do the next best thing and check out Awesomely Luvvie’s astute yet humorous recap/opinion piece on the article. (Actually, you should read this regardless.) Anyone who reads Luvvie knows she brings the funny, so you’ll get a laugh while attaining the finer points of Dyson’s work. And just for the record- I do hate that these brilliant scholars and former friends are beefing. […]

  56. April 22, 2015 at 7:03 am

    Luckily, I was warned that Miss Luvvie (and the Luvvie Squad) went in on MED’s treatise so I put Depends on before I read this. And it’s a good thing I did too, because a little pee escaped several times reading this post and y’all comments.

  57. SIPort
    April 22, 2015 at 8:09 am


    You had me howling. HOWLING with laughter. I’m glad it’s before work and my co-workers have not arrived yet.

    Your questions are on point.

    Dyson just filleted West.

    Grifter 1 trying to take our Grifter 2.

    Can’t stand either one, so I’ve just been following this in Black twitter, which has been HILARIOUS watching Team Dyson and Team West go at one another.

  58. Johanna
    April 22, 2015 at 11:32 am

    Wow! I don’t know that I would’ve have said it quite the way you did, but Luvvie, I pretty much felt the same way after reading this LOOONNGG essay. He was very intentional in his retribution. This took some time to write. While it was ungraceful of MED, I can’t say that Dr. West didn’t deserve it. His rants are inexcusable and he can’t seem to help himself.

  59. catlustrous
    April 22, 2015 at 11:47 am

    “On a Petty Literature scale of 0 to Your Mama Ain’t Shit….” Girl, I almost spit my coffee out!!

    With apologies, and always with credit given where it’s due, I will be adapting this line into my everyday shadyness and side-eyeing. Thankya!

  60. DetroitVsEverybody
    April 22, 2015 at 11:19 pm

    This was the intellectual equivalent of classic LL Cool J v Kool Moe Dee. Somewhere Anita Baker is like “Can I still pull Cornel or nah?”

  61. Sane Jane
    April 23, 2015 at 12:11 pm

    I am SURE it was not easy for MED to write this “dissertation” on Dr. West. This is pure KARMA coming back to Dr. West, who has long since built a house of shade, disrespect and jealousy of anyone he disagrees with. I applaud MED for having the guts to do this. Dr. West is just getting back what he has been doing to others for some time now. He just needs to go somewhere, have someone hot oil his dusty fro, and SADDOWN. Turn about is fairplay, y’all…………

  62. DallasDrumChick
    April 23, 2015 at 10:02 pm

    Y’all are better than me. Only time I’m reading anything with 10,000 words is if it’s for class.

  63. PacificSparkles
    April 24, 2015 at 4:41 am


    You nailed it! GooodGod, did you ever!!

  64. Zee
    April 25, 2015 at 1:58 am

    I laughed so hard I cried and got a belly ache.

  65. poopsie
    May 4, 2015 at 11:17 am

    I’d just like to be able to vote up or down on some of these comments! Just testify to some of the comments that already have been made.

  66. Little Dot on the Prairie
    May 9, 2015 at 10:42 pm

    I could barely get up off the floor to write this. I passed it on to two other folks. This off the chain FUNNY!!!!

  67. Little Do on the Prairie
    May 9, 2015 at 10:44 pm

    **This WAS off the chain FUNNY!!!!