Constant attacks on homosexuals and women show the battle between cultural differences in many of gangsta rappers. Gangsta rap is often known for its sexist lewd imagery. Weather its foul language or showing of guns in videos gangsta rap reflects a vicious lifestyle. It also portrays black relationships as nothing more than mere pleasure. Gangsta rappers refer to women as ho's and bitches often belittling black women to show how much they aren't needed in society.
The violent and often degrading lyrics of gangster rap have now become main-stream and is highly romanticized by young black and white youths, alike. To be able to analyze the death of Tupac Shakur, it is also important to address rap music and its influence on America’s culture. Hip Hop has become a multi-billion dollar industry that has come to dominate television, film and fashion, as well as radio. Many inner-city and urban residents are drawn to hip hop and are distrustful of many institutions, therefore, they look elsewhere for guidance and knowledge. This all too often comes in the form of rap idols and gangs.
American society traditionally describes a man to be aggressive, competitive, and dominant over women; simply being male does not suffice. Interestingly enough, all of these traits are characteristic of rap music and the ideologies promoted by the genre. Gender socialization plays an important role in this, as it involves the learning of gender roles through social agents such as families or the media; not only does gender socialization define how a man should be, but it also affects how men wish to be perceived in society. Being that hip hop was created – and is still dominated – by African American men, these masculine traits are emphasized and displayed in a variety of ways. Today, it is done by promoting sexist and misogynist ideals, emphasizing the importance material possessions, glorifying violence, and denouncing homophobia.
The introduction of the Black Panthers, which dominated a vast section of the Black Power movement, could arguably be accused of hindering the civil rights movement. They produced much negative influence in their more violent methods. Their intense emphasis on separatism, self defence and Black Nationalism could have debatably caused further racial tension due to its polarising effect of the black and white communities. This could be seen as a regression of the movement and although it is what the Black Powers wanted it did not have the desired effects. The Black Panthers were also consistently accused of encouraging a gang mentally across America.
The word “nigga” is one of the most popular words of hip hop enthusiasts. Contrary to the traditional derogatory meaning of the word, hip hop enthusiasts use the word as a term of fondness. People can also hear a Caucasian, Oriental, or Latino hip hop enthusiasts saying, “TJ is my nigga,” which stands for “TJ is a good friend.” The language of the Hip Hop culture changes constantly. What might be a cool statement today might be “played out” (outdated) in a year. Young African Americans have adopted the style of dress of upper class Caucasians as a manifestation of their lack of power in American society.
“Rap as an art form, began as personal narrative, telling the individual stories of urban lives ignored by the mainstream media.”(Rose, p.2-3). “It used to be a respectful, decent form of music, however, it has turned bad, into utter crap listened to by posers.”(“Rap”). When people are conversing and the word “rap” comes up, blacks and whites complain about the misogyny, materialism, drugs, and violence present in the lyrics and videos. There are many different forms of rap and they fall under two categories: the language of empowerment and the language of oppression. Conscious rap deals with empowerment and consists of “songs that are responsible, thought provoking, and/or inspirational toward positive change or a cry of protest against social injustice”.
The recent controversy over Nelly's music video " Tip-Drill" has highlighted what we've all known for some time: Hip-hop has a gender problem. And for most of hip-hop's 30-something years, folks have been compelled to point out the sexism, misogyny and homophobia that finds a forum in the lyrics of the young black and brown men who have primarily influenced the genre, and the lack of a womanist perspective that could directly counter those lyrics. In this regard, the recent decision of the Spelman College Student Government Association and others at the Atlanta University Center to try to hold Nelly accountable was part of a larger tradition, one honed by journalists like Joan Morgan, Raquel Cepeda, Karen Good and Elizabeth Mendez-Berry and scholars such as Tricia Rose, Cheryl Keyes and Gwendolyn Pough, whose new book Check It While I Wreck: Black Womanhood, Hip-Hop Culture and the Public Sphere drops in June. But in recognizing this larger tradition, we should also acknowledge that we may be asking hip-hop to do something that it's fundamentally incapable of. Let me be clear -- I'm on the front lines of any effort to get the men in hip-hop to rethink their pornographic uses of women's bodies and performance of lyrics that more often than not express, at best, a deep ambivalence about and fear of women (perfectly captured 14 years ago with the Bell Biv Devoe quip "never trust a big butt and a smile") and, at worst, outright hatred.
Many people are afraid to walk down their streets these days and parents whose kids join gangs often do not know how to handle this situation or how to help them out of this lifestyle. Many of the young teenagers joining a gang end up in prison destroying their futures. As many gangs perform violent crimes that affect a lot of people, it is important to understand the causes of why they form, why kids are eager to join them and what can be done to prevent them from doing this. The functionalist perspective is a good angle to look at this problem and shows how the breakdowns of various social institutions are leading to gangs and why kids join them. This perspective holds that problems of social institutions
Rap music is a genre of rhythm and blues music that consists of rhythmic vocals asserted over musical accompaniment. Music on early rap records sounded like the black music of the day, which was heavy funk or more than often disco music. Music has been around for centuries but probably the music that has the greatest influence on me has to be the rap/hip-hop industry. Unfortunately, rap music is not perceived by many people, young or old, as an art form, but as a fad that they hope will soon “fade away.” Hip hop has historically provided a voice for the silenced minorities and these roots have allowed for its rhythmic flows to transgress many nations’ borders, providing a global musical outlet for the disregarded. Rap’s early stars, from Grandmaster Flash to Public Enemy and LL Cool J, touched on humour, politics, ghetto life and realities they faced.
The Effect of the Family Membership in a street gang has an extremely detrimental effect on the lives of the young males who join them. Gang members “engage in more violent crimes and have more police contact than non-gang members” (Craig et al. 54) and are also more likely to engage in binge drinking and the use and sale of other drugs (Hawkins, Hill and Lui 1). Gang members also have a negative impact on their communities because of their proclivity towards crime. There are a lot of factors that can push someone towards gang membership, but the extremely young age of many gang members asks us what role does the young boy’s family play in his path to gang membership?