Music Censorship Essay

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Things are heating up in America. People are protesting outside of the movie theaters, concerts, and book and record stores of this great nation everywhere. What is all the fuss about? Censorship, Government officials, and raving mad protesters alike have been trying to stop the expressive creativity in everything from rap music to Mark Twain.
Censorship in music is a topic that has brought about much controversy in the past two decades. There have been many different arguments on the topic, however the question still remains as if it should be censored or it should not be censored. In Paul Blanshard’s book The Right To Read: The Battle Against Censorship, he speaks of censorship as a negative boundary on society. Blanshard argues that
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In order to fully understand ‘perverse modernism’, the power of the

material being viewed must be analyzed. Negative material can appeal to people because

viewing negative material draws the attention of people by appealing to their deepest

emotions, such as fear, excitement, and curiosity. It appeals to the emotions of

a wide range of people. For the youth, the simple fact that the topic is taboo is reason

enough for engagement. The curiosity of the youth about the forbidden is satisfied, and

they learn to manage anxiety and defeat fear by distorting and exaggerating reality. At the

same time, they bond with others, story tellers, and peers by sharing intense emotional

experiences. People continue to watch or listen to material that offends them because the

satisfaction they receive from it outweighs the costs. Some artists and musicians use

vulgar words and imagery because they think that they can not express their pain without

the use of those words. While the other majority of musicians and artists intentionally use

negative images and words because they fully aware of the ‘perverse modernism’

characteristic and chose to profit from it. Many artists feel that negative publicity is still

publicity and is worth obtaining.

Perverse modernism is becoming a phenomenon in society as more and more

people feel the need to view and profit from negative material. Martha Bayles

believes that people use society’s

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