The first thing that comes to my mind when reading this question is that music is a reflection of social status. It randomly creates new mindsets. Instead, it always echoes the reality of an era.

Hip hop culture emerged from the ghettos of New York City in the 70s. Reflecting the despair of African Americans in the changing urban culture of the United States and their associations to poverty, criminality, police brutality and unemployment, hip hop visualized the American dream as a new cultural influence. Through the conception of stereotypes and role models, hip hop has viewed broadly the post-civil rights of the black America producing a new music genre to express political views, opposition and controversy.

Hip hop soon became a massive cultural fact. Young people found a way to express themselves through distinctive clothing, hairstyle and artwork, conveying a new radical ethos generated from hip hop emcees. There is no doubt that many hip hop songs tell stories about sex, drugs, and violence in the black hoods of the East and West Coast. Yet, hip hop did not convey violence. Instead, it has tried to voice the oppression of African Americans and their need for civil rights in a society full of negative stereotypes.

Opposition and controversy always occur as a result of an oppressive political system. Black America in the 70s was heavily mistreated by police and society and black people needed a way to respond to those violent beatings. Being highly-politicized, the hip hop emcees dared to raise their voices against the White America. Being, indifferent of the impact of its governmental practices to the black society, White America got annoyed of this supposed outbreak of Black violence against commercialism and political correctness. In the fear of getting exposed, it accused the lower black classes for violence, anti-establishment behavior and anti-conventional ethos.

The same happened in the UK in the mid 70s. The only difference is that the punk movement did not include black people, but white young kids, who, being angry on the system, managed to convert anarchy and chaos to genuine political philosophy. Yet, the attitudes of that rebellious youth were secured only in their shocking and outrageous music, rather than in social acceptance and justification.

The truth is that music cannot – at any point – create violence. Instead, it expresses politically conscious views with its unique way of mapping the perplexity of the existing political landscape and forcing it to make sense. It makes no difference if it is about hip hop, punk or rock & roll. What it matters is if the political landscape respects all its members regardless of race, religion and political beliefs.

By: Christina Pomoni

About the Author:

I work as a financial and investment advisor but my passion is writing, music and photography. Writing mostly about finance, business and music, being an amateur photographer and a professional dj, I am inspired from life.

Being a strong advocate of simplicity in life, I love my family, my partner and all the people that have stood by me with or without knowing. And I hope that someday, human nature will cease to be greedy and demanding realizing that the more we have the more we want and the more we satisfy our needs the more needs we create. And this is so needless after all.

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Posted in Hip Hop by: Hip Hop Diva

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