Hip Hop And Its Impact On African American Culture

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The emergence of Hip Hop and Rap took America by storm causing an overwhelming amount of controversy throughout the common American culture of the 1980s and 1990s. From several different perspectives the new genre was seen as a disturbance which created violence and was quickly rejected by fear. Some promoters refused to book the genres artist and radio stations refused to play the music. For others it was an expression of rhythm and poetry. For others it was an outlet that addressed racism, education, sexism, drug use, and spiritual uplift for the African American community. The music has called for social relevance, originality, and a dedication to art that tends to challenge the mainstream music of the common American culture.
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A dominant theme of Rap and Hip Hop being an outlet began to reoccur. In a 1989 article in the New York Times titled: “Rap as Public Forum on Matters of Life and Death,” John Leland put into perspective of how the music became the way to address problems in the black community. The article starts off by talking about the movie Colors, a film focused on the lives of gang members who died because of the path they choose. With that the theme-song of the movie was preformed by several popular artist at that time Ice-T, a former gang member who was delivering an apology for the violence that had been created through gang relations. The article then goes on to quickly evaluate the music at that time and describes records to be punctuating with gunshots, filled with stories of pimping women and using terms such as spraying bullets to convey messages to listeners. However, Leland also includes how a movement was created to stop the violence. The movement calls for an end to black-on-black violence. The emergence of rap and hip hop in America began giving young people a chance to hear other young people call for change and a chance to show others that the music is always a voice for change. In addition, the article identified lyrics in songs where the gangster lifestyle was no longer glamorized using lyrics such as, “I was known as the gangster/ but believe me, that is no fun,” …show more content…

Another article by Jon Pareles titled: “Have Rap Concerts Become Inextricable Linked to Violence?” examines the relationship between Hip-Hop and Rap with violence. He begins with describing what entering a rap concert would be like; a long line on policemen, a metal detector, then being frisked and more police and security guards lining the halls. He also explains how violence and the music has lead to hightened racial tensions among the African American communities. However, those views have been seen as racist. The violence appears to take place in diifernt ways such as, fighting, vandalizing property, and disturbances that occur when people are getting in. At a Who concert in Cincinnati, 11 death were reported due to trapmling. He then goes on to say that violence occurs when the music hypens the crowd. In addition, the article states how violent people may be drawn to the crowd and the tension in the atmosphere casued by the presence of the police builds

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