Does Rap Music Create Violence

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Does Rap Music Create Violence

Post  Carlos Calegari on Sun May 31, 2009 11:09 pm

After purchasing Eminem's new album, I starting thinking about the lyrics in his music. First listening to his music in middle and high school I just listened to the music and thought it was cool. I never really payed any attention to the lyrics until now. I remember all the bad press he got from it claiming that he was causing teen violence and aggression. An article that I came across, said that researchers studied over 500 girls aged 14-18 who did and did not watch gangta rap videos for at least 14 hours a week. It was concluded that the girls who watched these videos were more prone to violent behavior. Does Rap Put Teens at Risk?. This always makes me wonder though if more violent people are prone to listen to more violent music.

Carlos Calegari

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Re: Does Rap Music Create Violence

Post  Stephen Brenner on Mon Jun 01, 2009 12:25 am

I agree with your last statement: Correlation does not imply causation. Rather, it would be more useful to make four groups and see how those results compare:
  1. Show videos to those who do not normally watch them.
  2. Show videos to those who normally watch them.
  3. Do not show videos to those who do not normally watch them.
  4. Do not show videos to those who normally watch them.
Doing this properly could produce causation results.

Stephen Brenner

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Re: Does Rap Music Create Violence

Post  patrickmccoy on Mon Jun 01, 2009 12:31 am

Yes the method mentioned by Stephen would determine causation in this case. It seems so simple to do, but why don't the researchers who are making these claims back them up with a study similar to this method. Maybe they are designing their experiments to verify their pre-conceived notions, and not to determine the correct cause of teen violence.

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Re: Does Rap Music Create Violence

Post  Stephen Brenner on Mon Jun 01, 2009 12:35 am

There are also ethical boundaries regarding that type of study. For example, if you hook new people on violent videos and it turns out it does cause them to be more violent, was it worth it? Maybe you could use that information to ban the videos, but that seems unlikely due to free speech and even if so, meanwhile you still have more violent people around.

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