7 September 2012
Today’s Big Hit: Epithetical Music. Really?
A person walks into a store and hears a four year old girl casually singing, “I kissed a girl and I liked it!” as the music on the radio plays along. Is this appropriate? Music censorship has always been a hot topic because adolescents’ main interest in music is never really what the lyrics truly mean. Therefore, although most people don’t fully pay attention to the lyrics, they start to feel a sudden change in their mood depending on the song they are listening to and what their immediate interpretation of the song is. As a result, some reports have proven how music has not only affected the mood but also the actions of the listener.
Some may believe that music is nothing more than just an art of sound that expresses the ideas and emotions of the composer of the music. However, most don’t fully understand the song itself, but listen to it solely because it is popular and easily accessible. This leads one to believe that perhaps they are unaware that most of the popular music that is constantly being exposed to them through the radio is polluted with racial and sexual epithets. Critics have more than the right to question the effectiveness of music, especially when psychological exercises have proven that music with violent lyrics has affected the thoughts of the listener.
Results of five experiments that have been conducted to find whether a relationship between aggressive music and acts of violence exists show that violent songs did lead to more aggressive interpretations of ambiguously aggressive words. Increased the relative speed with which people read aggressive vs. nonaggressive words, and increased the proportion of word fragments (such as h_t) that were filled in to make aggressive words (such as hit). The violent songs increased feelings of hostility without provocation or threat, according to the authors, and this effect was not the result of...