The Impact Of The Violent African American Stereotype In Rap Music

5055 words - 20 pages

This paper will show that the stereotype of the violent, criminal African-American portrayed in rap music lyrics can become a self-fulfilling prophecy for African-Americans. Repeated and long-term exposure to this stereotypical behavior in rap music lyrics can lead to increased aggression and this stereotype becoming accepted as a social norm by African-Americans. I intend to support my argument with examples and analysis of the violent African-American stereotype, and by explaining how the stereotype can become accepted as a social norm.

The violence that permeates rap lyrics should come as no surprise because music is only one of the numerous forms of media, and violence in the media is often described as being too prevalent. The myth, “Media violence is only a reflection of violence in society,” can be refuted in different ways. One method is to use real world statistics of crime and violence and compare them to statistics of crime and violence in the media. An estimated 25 million acts of violence occur in television annually, compared to 1.5 million acts of violence in society (Potter 50). This comparison shows that “violent crime is much more frequent on TV than in real life” (Potter 50). Television depicts murder and assault as the two most frequent acts of crime, while real world statistics show that burglary and larceny “are the two most prevalent crimes” (Potter 50). The rates of violent crime in television news shows over-represent the rate of violent crime in the real world (Potter 56), and television news shows under-represent the percentage of male crime victims while over-representing the percentage of female crime victims. After examining these facts, it is obvious that the statement, “Media violence is only a reflection of violence in society” is false.

Television has been the focal point of the majority of content analyses on media violence (Potter 47), while music has not been analyzed enough to reflect the influence that it has on adolescents. According to researchers Christenson and Roberts, “American adolescents spend…between four and five hours a day listening to music…[which is] at least as much time as they spend watching standard television fare and more than they spend with their friends outside of school” (8). Music media influences the lives of adolescents in a number of ways. It “…alters and intensifies their moods, furnishes much of their slang [and] provides models for how they act…” (Christenson and Roberts 8). Music plays an important role in the lives of adolescents. They spend as much time, if not more, listening to music as they spend watching television, and therefore, music deserves additional scholarly attention.

Music is not just music, or just a source of entertainment; rather music is “a major force and presence in contemporary American adolescence” (Christenson and Roberts 11). Besides the belief that music is just music, another popular belief is that, “Nobody...

Find Another Essay On The Impact of the Violent African-American Stereotype in Rap Music

The Influence of Rap/Hip-Hop Music Essay

2044 words - 8 pages learned was called ‘twerking’, or the misogynistic rap music that my classmates danced to. I have not been to a party since then, and I do not think I ever will go to one again. It did not take me long to understand why my parents never let me listen to rap music before: it is this misogynistic, or a hatred towards women, type of music. Rap music clearly portrays women in several, negative ways, such as reducing them to sexual objects and

"The Cultural Diffusion of African Music in Modern day Mainstream American Culture"

1506 words - 6 pages diffused into other music forms today such as Rap, Jazz, and even Rock-and-Roll.Gospel music, though primarily performed in churches, specifically Baptist churches, is a mainstream form of music that is heavily influenced by African culture. The word Gospel means "Good News" and correlates with The Holy Bible's Gospels in the New Testament. Gospel Music can be called "black music" by some however; gospel music is really various kinds of religious

Rap vs. folk music. Is rap the new Folk music?

818 words - 3 pages people, passed down orally, and somewhat traditional. Again, was called on to give a definition to this genre. The website responded with the following, "A form of popular music developed especially in African-American urban communities and characterized by spoken or chanted rhyming lyrics with a syncopated, repetitive rhythmic accompaniment."Is Rap Music the new Folk Music? The answer is yes. The two genres definitions only seem to

The Negative Portrayal of Women in Hip Hop and Rap Music

1645 words - 7 pages Doug E. Fresh, a popular beat-boxer in rap music today, has been quoted saying, “Hip-hop is supposed to uplift and create, to educate people on a larger level and to make a change.” Although this is the original intention of hip-hop music, public opinion currently holds the opposite view. Since the 1970’s musical artists have changed the face of hip-hop and rap and worldwide, people – mostly teens—have been striving to emulate certain

One of the Most Violent Slave Rebellions in American History

1435 words - 6 pages Nat Turner was born into slavery, in South Hampton County, on October 2nd, 1800. He was a preacher that believed he was sent to lead people out of slavery. On August 21st, 1831, he led one of the most violent slave rebellions in American history. After six weeks in hiding, he was caught and hung for the atrocities carried out under his direction. The purpose of his rebellion was to help end slavery, but the results the slaves faced were the

Religion in Rap Music

1754 words - 8 pages . Theoretical and methodological challenges are posed to the normative manner in which the authenticity of African American religious commitment and experience is gauged and verified. Rap music forces theoretical complexity and methodological comfort with tension. It expresses desire for a fuller sense of meaning through the felt reality of their bodies, as they take up time and space and force their recognition. It is through this forced recognition

The Use of Racial Stereotype in Cinema

2003 words - 8 pages the African American, are also victims of negative stereotyping in early cinema. They are usually portrayed as stupid, aggressive and primitive, as lesser than the ‘white man.’ Some directors have attempted to revise these inaccurate portrayals of minority groups. For example, Arthur Penn’s cinematic masterpiece entitled Little Big Man (1970) provides the audience with a more accurate depiction of the Native American from the mid-19th century

Influence of African Music in North American and Latin American Music

1722 words - 7 pages ). Many people believe that North American music displays the most African traits outside of Africa; however, it is in Latin America that the cultural impact of Africa is most prevalent and well defined. When Africans were brought to North and Latin America in the 18th and 19th centuries, they brought their music with them. At that time, slave owners and colonial authorities were largely against allowing slaves to partake in song and dance. Many

The evolution of rap

3482 words - 14 pages , a dominant genre of music all over the world. Rap has given a voice to every culture that produces and circulates it. From France to Japan, rap has found a niche in many places across the globe.The dominating sound of urban hip hop culture, rap quickly became a symbol for African-American style and condition of living. Hip hop culture's style and sound began to bloom in New York party scenes in the Bronx, Brooklyn and other ghettos in the late

Violence In Rap Music

2078 words - 8 pages Boom, boom! Boom, boom! The kind of bass that drains batteries and the kind of lyrics that unload clips, these are the sounds that rap music produces. I chose this topic because I am extremely interested in rap music and I want to explore the violent aspect of the industry. I have never had a chance to look at the violent side of it and I plan to find answers to questions I have in my search. Tupac Shakur is one of my favorite artists and when

The Essential Role Of Stereotype In Propaganda

1316 words - 5 pages The Essential Role Of Stereotype In Propaganda People encounter propaganda and stereotypes in their daily lifestyle from social interaction with peers to family and the media. Propaganda and stereotype are correlative; however their conceptual fundaments are different. Propaganda is a systematic manipulation of public opinion that is consciously disseminated to promote a doctrine or cause. Contemporary propaganda deliberately attempts to

Similar Essays

This Essay Discusses The Influence And Pressure That Rap And Hip Hop Music Bring Upon The African American Youth.

675 words - 3 pages The Young Black Male and Rap MusicI am going to study the role of a young black male in today's society. I will look at the pressures that predominantly black music puts on the young black male and the kind of impression it can make on them.When a young black male is presented, some people might think of lazy, drug and alcohol users, own weapons, and people that talk in the "Ebonics" language. Also you may think of them being racist towards some

The Repercussions Of Rap Music. Essay

2897 words - 12 pages . Thirty-five years ago, it was The Beatles who had sent everyone into a music frenzy with such hits "Yellow Submarine" and "I Wanna Hold Your hand", but in the year 1984 when the rap group N.W.A took over with their smash hit "Straight Outta Compton", the face of music has been forever changed. What was known to be African-American pop music, rap is now, one of the most talked about and controversial forms of music within the rock era

Music The Power Of Free Styling In Rap Culture

1797 words - 7 pages The Power of Free-styling in Rap Culture For any avid consumer of hip-hop music, the timeless question of how to judge rapping skills is often brought up. Just as sports fans argue over who are the best players, rap fans argue over who is the best rapper. Instead of comparing touchdowns or homeruns, songs and verses are compared. The two major ways of judging someone's rapping ability are the free style rap and the written rap

Taking The Rap: The Social Impact Of Violence In H

863 words - 3 pages in today's moral standards, which if unaided could ultimately lead to our downfall.The first problem society continues to overlook is the fact that hip-hop music leads to violence and not to reality. Our culture continuously ignores the excessive glorification of violent acts. One survey shows that "forty-seven percent of mothers…believe that the messages in rap lyrics contribute 'a great deal' to school violence"(MediaScope), which