Rap Music Effects & Youth
What do half naked women, cocaine and millions of dollars in jewelry have in common with each other? They are all common components in rap music songs. Since the beginning of time music has impacted history and culture all over the world. Over the years many genres of music have been developed, varying from Soca to Jazz and everything in between. The most popular genre in America today is Hip-Hop, which also consists of many subgenres. The most popular subgenre among youth is rap. “Teenagers listen to an average of nearly 2.5 hours of music per day” (Parker-Pope).What is rap music? “Rap is oral language set against a musical background that dates back to early African Societies who used the tradition to entertain an audience in tribal history and current events” (Gerdes85). But rap music has evolved rapidly over the years. There are two main forms of modern rap: political or Black nationalist rap; and gangster rap. Black Nationalist rap being more positive, voices messages on social issues in the world today. Whereas Gangster speaks of violence, taking what you want from anybody and disrespecting other individuals. Gangster rap artists have had many squabblings with the law as well as with patrons. This genre contains multitudinous amounts of inappropriate themes such as murder, sexual disposition and robbery. Gangster rap music negatively influences youth through suggesting provocative and violent images.
Rap music continually affects individuals throughout their whole life. Starting at school age, where “studies have associated lower grades with students who listen to rap” (Copley) until adulthood. As a result gangster rap begins to affect future identity development. Many youth use rap music as a stress reliever to find someone that understands the struggles they face in daily life. They view rappers as heroes or some type of luminary. When doing so youth try to find a common link between themselves and the artist who is...
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