Hip-hop artists are stereotypically associated with drug taking and gun crime, while certain lyrical content has been perceived as aggressive, misogynistic and offensive. The already degenerate youth of today, if we believe the press, are…
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It reflects the realities they face on a daily basis and their struggle to come to terms with the world around them. Far from encouraging young people into a life of drug addiction and gun crime, hip-hop can actually save them from it by proving a form of expression which can release their anger, stress and anxieties. This essay will explore the two sides to this hotly debated topic and attempt to understand just what role hip-hop plays in modern society.
Jennifer McLune is a supporter of the idea that hip-hop is a damaging influence on modern society. Her focus is particularly on females, since she argues that hip-hop betrays its black women listeners by objectifying them. The basic premise for her argument is that far from offering an outlet for young black females, it actually encourages them to conform to roles delimitated along the lines of ‘baby mommas’, ‘chickenheads’ or ‘bitches’. Rather than offering positive role models for women, this music instead attempts to limit the role that women play in a society where men set the rules. This is an often levied criticism. At first listen lyrics to many hip-hop songs appear to have little respect for women beyond pure sexuality. McClure takes this point and develops it, in a distinctly feminist tone.
McLune argues against Powell’s idea that the overt misogyny in hip-hop comes from socio-economic factors which have encourages this approach. She argues this point by indicating that women, too, have been raised in the exact same socio-economic conditions. Further, rich white males are just as capable as poor black ones of sexist slants. Her approach is an overtly feminist one which argues that women should not accept this war which men are waging on them. She argues that hip-hop culture is driven by sexism and that even artists which are opposed to this do not openly publicise the fact. It is so mainstream to hate women, it would
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