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Hip hop - Essay Example

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Hip hop appears to me as something that was originally distinctive of a black American sub-culture which has greatly contributed to the enrichment of the overall American cultural life. Although it had originated from the Bronx in New York City, it has since gained wide…
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Download file to see previous pages Some of its political elements include mockery of the worst aspect of slavery such as the dozens (slave auctions) and battling (putting someone else down through poetry). In hip hop, African Americans found a medium to express their message, similar to the jazz music of the earlier decades to vent their frustrations against widespread racial discrimination and their marginalization in American society which only lately has been rectified by laws.
In a sense, hip hop music and its accompanying culture is closely related to another and unique newly-invented black American form of expression which is slam poetry. Many people are not familiar with this new art form of spoken poetry but blacks were the first to popularize a more vibrant form of poetry reading, where it assumes the form of a performance act done on the stage and in full view of the public. Poets not only read out aloud their compositions but also act out their poems messages in a convincing and entertaining manner. Both hip hop and def poetry (as slam poetry is oftentimes alternatively called) share a common characteristic of free verse. It had a similar provenance from another black American musical art form which is reggae.
Both forms of artistic expressions employ a rhythmic cadence that is pleasing to the ear and the mind; these forms exhibit creativity, originality and imaginative composition. In a sense, both are also considered as performance arts (Aptowics, 2008, 213) in which the singer or poet, as the case may be, has to dress for the part and employ a variety of props such as an appropriate dress, composure, tone of voice, manner of delivery, posture and non-verbal body language such as hand gestures or facial expressions. What I like most about hip hop and its culture is an ability to compose lyrics not constrained by meter, indentation or format; this is ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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