Missy Elliott’s Hall of Fameworthy Career: Hip Hop Feminism, Culture, and Capital


This case explores the career trajectory and success of Missy Elliott, a prominent figure in the music industry. By examining Elliott’s rise to fame from a historical perspective, readers will understand the factors that contributed to and opposed her exceptional achievements. The first section focuses on Elliott’s rise to fame and explores the societal landscape and prevailing issues from the early 1990s to the early 2000s. The subsequent section weaves in theoretical frameworks put forth by Pierre Bourdieu and Catherine Hakim, highlighting specific moments in Elliott’s career where these concepts come into play. The final part of the case study focuses on Elliott’s career in the present day, showcasing her ongoing achievements and the different types of capital that have propelled her forward. By examining the interplay between concepts of capital, power, and agency, and their intersection with Black Feminism, the case contributes to the ongoing debate surrounding the success of women in the music industry, explicit sexuality, and its impact on patriarchal norms that often objectify and marginalize women.

This case was prepared for inclusion in Sage Business Cases primarily as a basis for classroom discussion or self-study, and is not meant to illustrate either effective or ineffective management styles. Nothing herein shall be deemed to be an endorsement of any kind. This case is for scholarly, educational, or personal use only within your university, and cannot be forwarded outside the university or used for other commercial purposes.

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