Would you believe that there is some respectable scientific research that proves rap music has many positive benefits to society?
“Rappers are not your usual type of person. They’re young, black, poor, and masculine. They tend to be competitive, aggressive, crude, violent, and intolerant, and they’re fond of swearing.
Rap is man’s way of coming to terms with his fear and anger,” says Tom Tate, head of music at the Institute of Education and the man behind the research.
Dr. Tate has researched rap since 2010, and the results are fascinating and inspiring, to say the least. According to his research, rappers are just as “responsible” and socially-engaged as their counter-parts.
Rappers are commonly labeled as “gangster” characters, but as he states, “If gangsterism is a brand of hip-hop, it’s one that’s outgrown its last phase of urban youth alienation.”
Dr. Tate says this is not to say that gangster rap music is gone. In fact, the video below features an interview with a gangster rapper who states that his lyrics were “just how I felt at that time.”
He furthers, “I have my past, but in the last 10 years, I’ve learned to be responsible for my actions and to have a healthy respect for other people,”
Do you really think that we can argue that “gangster rap” was anything more than a sub-culture with some violent themes?
Dr. Tate has also written about why rappers are more socially-engaged:
“While mainstream artists engage in many of the same activities as rappers – graffiti, wearing conspicuous clothing, music videos – their primary focus is more about their image, message, and marketing strategy.
‘Hip hop artists are much more aware of and aware of the broader context of their work,’ he says. ‘Their engagement in the street and with fans is far more developed.’”
What’s more, the Institute of Education has conducted a poll which discovered that 78% of British people would support a rap contest. This is in stark contrast to a similar poll done in the United States, which revealed that only 27% of Americans would support it.
This is really the subject of this article – rap music has a lot to offer society.
And rap is not just about aggression and murder – quite the opposite, really.
And rap has a message of justice and equality.
It can teach important life lessons in a manner that is both entertaining and beneficial.
It teaches us about social responsibility. There is even evidence suggesting that people who are introduced to rap music at a young age have a higher probability of voting in an election and being more socially-engaged.
And the most interesting thing about this research is that the negative stereotypes and assumptions about rappers are wrong.
If we assume that every rapper is a criminal, then we assume that they all live by the criminal justice system and that they all have the same perspective on life as every other prisoner.
But that is not true.
As Dr. Tate states:
“We have to look beyond our prejudiced assumptions and fear and at the inner life of rappers. The evidence in this new research confirms that many rappers engage with their communities and are social and political activists.
They are human beings, they love their families, they have good jobs, and we need to show them that there are better ways of living and that we want to be part of that.”
This is music that is worthy of its place in the cultural pantheon.
- Rap music is not the enemy.
- Rap is not the catalyst for crime.
- Rap music is the antidote.
The hip-hop community needs to wake up and take a hard look at themselves and what they stand for.
But don’t worry, it’s not too late.
Rap music is still making positive impacts in the world today, and it will continue to do so in the future.
Over the years, rap music has been criticized for perpetuating violence. Some recent studies have concluded that rappers tend to be more violent than other people. However, there is not one legitimate explanation for this.
For instance, while rap music may often depict violence, violence in the world is actually at an all-time low. And while this may be true, any explanation of this fact needs to account for the increased amount of illegal drugs and other substances released to the general public.
This would explain why so many rappers seem to get involved in violent and delinquent behavior. As to the idea that most rappers are themselves criminals, this again is quite ironic, considering that these same people criticize rappers for this very reason.
Rap music is supposed to be a space for black people to express themselves and share their feelings. That’s the beauty of this genre of music.
It’s not all about going to the club, getting wasted, and making money off selling drugs. The rap culture has given many of our brothers and sisters a space to get the word out about how the government and the world are treating them.
Many rap artists have inspired and have helped create change in this world.
But most importantly, it’s a space for black people to teach and inspire the next generation of rap artists. Some of the most prominent artists of this genre have been black; names such as Notorious B.I.G., Snoop Dogg, Kendrick Lamar, Common, Tupac, Andre 3000, and many more.
These artists have had such a great impact on society, which is evidenced by the sheer volume of new rappers coming out. Like Chance the Rapper, Rappers are helping to uplift the communities in which they live and show people there’s more to hip hop than what you usually see.