Author and director E. Raymond Brown garnered notable recognition for his critically acclaimed self-published book, Will the Real Pimps and Ho’s Please Stand Up! Now, along with co-creator William H. Arntz, Brown is taking the conversation of exploitation in modern society to new heights with the film adaptation, Ghetto Physics: Will the Real Pimps and Ho’s Please Stand Up! The term “ghetto physics” stems from principles of metaphysics, which studies the relation between mind and matter. Ghetto Physics adopts the concept of microcosm and macrocosm and applies it to multiple power structures, be it street or corporate culture. The words “pimp” and “ho” is only used as a simplistic metaphor to describe the dynamics of exploitative relationships explored in the film. Recently, E. Raymond Brown took the time to share more on the film and its purpose with the AFRO.

AFRO: What compelled you to produce this film?

E. Raymond Brown: I was already involved in music production for years and that’s how I was kind of aware of the terminology being inundated into pop and hip-hop culture. You know, with the “Big Pimpin,” “Pimp Juice,” “Pimp My Ride” corporate culture…capitalized off of hip-hop culture. I was studying archetypal psychology at the time, so looking at the traditional role patterns in everybody’s folklore and mythology…I started to notice how these terms “pimpin’ hos” were being used. It’s not just about prostitution, it was about power dynamics so it had archetypal significance. I thought no one was putting forth the archetypal analysis so that’s what first prompted me to put together the idea.

AFRO: Were you a little shocked by the dynamic?

ERB: When I first saw the film American Pimp….that was shocking to me. I’m from the hood in L.A., so I’m around the thugs and the drugs and all that. But what was going on with the pimp game just in terms of how those dynamics came together, I was blown away. It amazed me how that realm came together, how there was an equilibrium. And that’s what I think is very interesting…Like if you went and told the average prostitute or whatever on the street, “You shouldn’t be doing this”…you know she or he, if we took it in a non-gender specific, would say “get away from me”…There’s an equilibrium and there’s a commitment by both figures in that situation to the game. 

AFRO: In the movie, you touch on your own experience in the “game.” Can you share what that experience was like?

ERB: I think it’s just overall the American system. Honestly, I tell people I had to do a lot of pimpin’ and hoin’ in to get this film done. Definitely, I’ve experienced both roles. And I’ve never been someone who’s been the big wielder of power. I’m not majorly successful in business or anything like that. I worked…technician gigs and stuff like that. If I had a better understanding of the nature of this system and its workings, the investment game certain expects of the credit game, I could have parlayed myself further.

AFRO: Would you say that exploitation, to a certain degree, is needed to make things work globally?

ERB: Exploitation is just a part of the inherent nature of group dynamics…In a archetypal analysis, some people are just more savvy, more strategic, more domineering. And then some people are more docile and submissive. And neither one of them is better than the other. They both have value, but that’s just the nature of how we are, we have these archetypes woven through us.

AFRO: What do you want people to take away from this film?

ERB: I think our critical thinking is dormant. It’s been dumb down by a lot of electronic media and a lot of manipulation….We’re bombarded by a lot of what I call “Ho Chatter”….So people kind of need that trap to get awaken. That kind of shock conversation that puts it in their face and then they’ll start to think more critically and be aware. 

Bobby Marvin

Special to the AFRO