Hip Hop Music

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Hip-hop is a music genre that has recently been deemed a cultural movement in the United States. In essence, this type of music is distinguished by four key elements: breakdancing, DJing, rapping, and graffiti writing. Hip-hop is considered to have developed in the twentieth century in New York among black and Latino urban youth, and it is still evolving today. Beginning with old-school styles, hip-hop has increasingly infiltrated pop culture, absorbing new techniques and elements, and evolving to become the dominant dance direction.Although hip-hop has been blamed for the prominence of violence in the American society, many have agreed that it serves as a voice for those subjugated by economic and political oppression. This essay will explain why historians will two hundred years from now, identify Tupac Shakur as the most significant musician in the hip-hop music genre.

Tupac Shakur and his Significance

Tupac Shakur still maintains to be one of the iconic figures in the hip-hop industry, two decades after his death. The hip-hop artist is considered as the most influential, dynamic, and self-destructive stars of the Nineties. Although he had a lot of contradictions in his life, Tupac was honest as he never tried to hide the kind of person he was in reality (Hollander and Jennifer 663). It is this aspect about the musician that attracted him to people; Tupac was able to reach people from diverse backgrounds. Ranging from intellectuals, scholars to African Americans and Latinos, who created the hip-hop culture. In essence, Tupac represents the most important voices in the history of hip-hop and pop music; not only in America, but in the whole world. Available information argues that he became driven by the purpose to impact change at an early stage, an aspect that was motivated by his background (Elkins 506). Growing up, Tupac was ushered into a childhood surrounded by crime, poverty, violence, and drugs.

From my perspective, Tupac’s significance is not only based on his music career, but also his impact in the society and what he advocated for throughout his career. Essentially, the musician identified the problems in his community and used his music to expose such issues, even at the expense of his life. Various aspects addressed in Tupac’s music include police brutality, violence, urban alienation, social injustice, an ineffective education system, peace among others (Nocella II 186). As such, it is evident that the artist used music to try and bring positive change in his community. Additionally, his thoughtful lyrics served as a motivation for youths as they could concentrate on self-actualization and development (Brown 9). He became a hero, who people inspired to be; arguably, he has influenced a generation of rappers time after time.


In essence, hip-hop music has been considered a cultural movement, which includes elements such as rapping, break dancing, and graffiti. Although hip-hop as a music genre developed earlier, it gained relevance in the United States in the 1900s. Although it has been associated with rising cases of violence and murders, hip-hop is a voice of the issues affecting the society. In particular, minorities such as African Americans and Latinos, where the genre is said to have originated. Tupac Shakur is still one of the most iconic figures in the hip-hop industry. The artist identified problems in the society, some of which he went through and used music to expose them in order to bring change. Two decades after his death, Tupac’s impact is still recognized, not only in America, but in the whole world. Therefore, it is evident that 200 years from now, Tupac Shakur will still be considered the most significant artist in the hip-hop industry.

Work Cited

Brown, Angela Christin. "Speak Out: Tupac Shakur." Advances in Language and Literary

Studies 6.1 (2015): 7-10.

Elkins, Jennifer, et al. "Teaching with Tupac: Building a solid grounding in theory across the

social work education continuum." Journal of Teaching in Social Work 35.5 (2015): 493-


Hollander, Justin, and Jennifer Quinn. "More than noise: Employing hip-hop music to inform

community development practice." Community Development 47.5 (2016): 652-669.

Nocella II, Anthony J., et al. "Hip Hop, Food Justice, and Environmental Justice." Addressing

Environmental and Food Justice toward Dismantling the School-to-Prison Pipeline.

Palgrave Macmillan US, 2017. 177-192.

April 13, 2023

Music Sociology Culture

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