"Damn how much damage can you do with a pen", says rapper Eminem in his song titled, Who Knew. This song is on Eminem’s most recent and most controversial album, The Marshall Mathers LP. If it possible for one single quote to sum up my research paper, then this quote does it. There exists an intense and extremely controversial set of circumstances surrounding Eminem and his music. Eminem’s lyrics have been intensely criticized lately and have been categorized as hate-filled and inappropriate by many gay organizations. The leading organization in this controversy is the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation, more commonly referred to as GLAAD. Their primary focus is to create consciousness about Eminem’s inappropriate use of derogatory words against homosexuals. GLAAD is protesting Eminem’s album as well as his four Grammy nominations. Since GLAAD is a liberal gay organization, they are limited by definition; in terms of how much they can participate in the complex situation that surrounds Eminem’s lyrics. They see words as either derogatory or not. Therefore they can not truly take part in the discussion about the constant evolution of the meanings of words, that occurs in our society. Eminem is undoubtedly the best artist to use as an example to show the effect of artist’s lyrics upon society, especially upon the youths in our society.
Whether or not Eminem’s lyrics are offensive enough to be banned is a discussion without a true answer. Therefore the major focus of my paper, the connection between music (particularly rap and Eminem) and our culture, is a subject which is greatly affected by whomever’s eyes you are looking out of. The most effective way of understanding...
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...e beauty of language, and its many varying applications. Rap is a style of music unlike any other. Rap is competition in its rawest and most simple form. It is based on a set of traditions that promotes the besting of those who have just bested you. Doing damage is essential to excelling in rap. If you participate in rap and don’t do damage then you won’t be doing rap justice. If you participate in rap and don’t do damage then you are not sticking to the lofty traditions rap has and you are not helping to enhance language. Most importantly, if you participate rap, or even if you don’t and you voice your thoughts through another form of creative expression and you don’t do damage, then you are cheating yourself. And you will never be able to honestly answer the question of, How much damage can you do with a pen? And that is a lost opportunity that no person deserves.
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