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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 227850 Find in a Library
Title: Black Youth Violence Has a Bad Rap
Journal: Journal of Social Issues  Volume:59  Issue:1  Dated:2003  Pages:121-140
Author(s): Jabari Mahiri; Erin Conner
Date Published: 2003
Page Count: 20
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This study elicited and analyzed perspectives on violence of 41 middle-school students attending a small charter school in a low-income, predominately Black section of a large northern California city, with attention to ways these students interpreted or reflected upon rap music and hip-hop culture in their representations of violence, crime, and sex.
Abstract: The students indicated that although their lives are permeated by violence, they have developed skills for coping with it; and they have more progressive values than are represented in the rap discourse to which they are exposed. They listen to and dance to the music primarily for the beat, not the lyrics; and they are not concerned about adopting the values and behaviors so explicit in some of the music. This perspective challenges the simple connections that the dominant public discourse and media have drawn between rap music and its conditioning effects on the attitudes and behaviors of Black youth. These same connections have not been made for White youth, who purchase 70 percent of rap music. The study's data collection involved two classes in the school, the combined language arts/social studies class and the academic literacy class. In the first class, data collection focused on a curriculum unit on the book, "Our America: Life and Death on the South Side of Chicago" (Jones and Newman, 1997), which was written by two teenagers. This book and the learning activities and projects developed around it produced a variety of data and products from the students on their understanding and experiences with violence. Data collection in the second class centered on a unit developed around rap and hip-hop. 23 references
Main Term(s): Juvenile delinquency factors
Index Term(s): Adolescent attitudes; Adolescent females; Adolescent males; Adolescents at risk; Black/African Americans; California; Coping; Cultural influences; Media violence; Media-crime relationships; Victims of violent crime; Violence; Violence causes
Note: For other articles in this issue, see NCJ-227844-49 and NCJ-227851-52.
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