Black + Iconic: Queen Latifah

Howard University sophomore Rachel explains why the Queen of hip-hop is rap royalty and how she empowers others.

In 2023, Queen Latifah became the first woman in rap to be honored by the Kennedy Center. But that was after a career that took young Dana Owens from humble beginnings in East Orange, N.J., to the top of the hip-hop charts, then to movies, television and international stardom. She was also granted the Lifetime Achievement Award at the 2021 BET Awards.  Her success has inspired a generation of women in music and entertainment and has served as beacon for fellow artists like Lizzo, Rapsody, Megan Thee Stallion.  Fun fact: Latifah was nominated for an Academy Award for her performance in 2003’s Chicago, and won a Golden Globe for her role in 2008’s Life Support.

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