Misogyny in rap music

Misogyny in rap music: a content analysis of prevalence and meanings

From Men and Masculinities

Rap music is renowned for being misogynistic, but little research has investigated this dimension of the music. This study assesses the portrayal of women in a representative sample of rap songs, it outlines key themes in this music and considers what specific messages are conveyed. In comparison to other genres rap music stands out for the intensity and graphic nature of its lyrical objectification, exploitation, and victimization of women. This paper argues that changing the portrayal of women within this music requires deeper shifts, altering the conditions under which it is created: socioeconomic disadvantage and associated gender relations in local communities, the material interests of the record industry, and the larger cultural objectification of women and associated norms of hegemonic masculinity.

Abstract

Rap music has a reputation for being misogynistic, but surprisingly little research has systematically investigated this dimension of the music. This study assesses the portrayal of women in a representative sample of 403 rap songs. Content analysis identified five gender-related themes in this body of music—themes that contain messages regarding ‘‘essential’’ male and female characteristics and that espouse a set of conduct norms for men and women. Our analysis situates rap music within the context of larger cultural and music industry norms and the local, neighborhood conditions that inspired this music in the first place.


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Article details
Weitzer, R., & Kubrin, C. (2009). Misogyny in Rap Music: A Content Analysis of Prevalence and Meanings Men and Masculinities, 12 (1), 3-29 DOI: 10.1177/1097184X08327696

     
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