Hip Hop As A Culture Essay

892 words - 4 pages

The three assigned articles all dealt with hip hop as a culture in the era of the 70s. It was the time of emceeing, graffiti, break-dancing, and deejaying. It was also a time when hip hop culture was primarily thought of as African American.
The first article examines how graffiti was seen in the 1970s. Graffiti was seen as a commonplace thing on the streets of New York. This is portrayed in “The Politics of Graffiti” by Craig Castleman where he explains the timeline of the rules and regulations Mayor John V. Lindsay tries to imply to get rid of graffiti from New York’s streets to no avail. There were many conflicting opinions between those in the community. Officials said that graffiti ruins the community and takes thousands of dollars to remove. Council city president Sanford Garelik said “graffiti pollutes the eye and mind and may be one of the worst forms of pollution we have to combat” (Castleman 22). Graffiti artists like Taki believed they were not doing anything wrong so they were not going to stop. Taki talks about the situation by saying, “I could never retire … besides it doesn’t harm anybody. I work. I pay taxes too. Why do they go after the little guy?” (Castleman 21). Some members of the community go against the mayor and believe that he has gone too far with his fight against graffiti. New York Magazine published a long article by Richard Goldstein where he states that “it just may be the kids who write graffiti are the healthiest and most assertive people in their neighborhoods” (Castleman 25). Since the 1970s, things have changed to the point where graffiti is not such a big problem, but in my point of view graffiti was not even that big of a problem then. With the way that the officials were talking about it one would think that graffiti was actually hurting somebody. Graffiti was just a way for the kids to deal with their tough lives in the streets of New York. Nowadays though, I do not see graffiti to have the influence on hip hop culture that it used to.
The second article, “Jive Talking N.Y. DJs Rapping Away in Black Discos” by Robert Ford, Jr. discusses how DJs were making a comeback in black discos. The article introduces us to Eddie Cheeba who says that “the rapping craze grew out of a need for something more than records – these people go to discos every week and they need more than music to motivate them … I not only play records, but I rap to them and they answer me” (43). This was a time period of rapping and deejaying,...

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