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Reppin’ the nation, reppin’ themselves: Nation branding and personal branding in Kenya’s music video industry

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This article explores the entanglement of nation branding and personal branding in the Kenyan music video industry. Although self-commodification and labouring on behalf of the nation are both indicative of neo-liberal governmentality, Kenyan music video directors build personal brands to wrestle creative control from their clients during the production process and they invoke their experiences representing Kenya abroad to elevate their professional status at home. Thus, branding in the Kenyan music video industry illustrates the complexities and contradictions of neo-liberal governmentality in global cultural production.

Keywords: Kenya; cultural production; music videos; nation branding; neo-liberalism; personal branding

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: University of Iowa

Publication date: March 1, 2020

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