The Oppression Of Music In African American Music

Decent Essays

Different genres of music have been developed to address specific goals, and, in some cases, to soothe particular emotions. From the beginning of civilization, music has been used for self-expression and communication of hidden messages intended to serve a given purpose. As African Americans struggled with the yoke of oppression and slavery, they sought means through which they could not only console and find comfort among themselves but also pass specific messages to their abusers and the entire world. At the peak of the oppression of black people in America, “basic human rights were denied, blacks were beaten, whipped, raped and systems of justification arose to institutionalize slavery” (Sanchez 3). In the 1980s and 1990s, as more African American singers sought to express their resentment and share with the entire world the true facts of their experiences, the blues genre was popularized. Queen Latifah was one of the famous artists who chose to raise the voice of the voiceless. Her song “Evil That Men Do” illustrates the society that did little to help the needy but largely pursued selfish interests and had misplaced priorities.

The American society of that time failed to recognize the critical needs of its members. While some African Americans began finding their feet and establishing themselves as successful American citizens, others remained in the cycle of poverty. Their lives were characterized by daily struggles to provide for their families, but the

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