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Balancing ActsYouth Culture in the Global City$
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Natasha Kumar Warikoo

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780520262102

Published to California Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520262102.001.0001

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Music and Style

Music and Style

Americanization or Globalization?

Chapter:
(p.23) Chapter 2 Music and Style
Source:
Balancing Acts
Author(s):

Natasha K. Warikoo

Publisher:
University of California Press
DOI:10.1525/california/9780520262102.003.0002

This chapter focuses on taste preferences in the music and style of children of immigrants in multiethnic schools in two global cities, New York and London. Hip-hop is by far the most popular music and style. Its predominance in both schools lead some rebellious teens to reject it in favor of rock and punk music, along with the associated Goth or grunge styles. However, neither a taste for hip-hop nor for rock or punk has led to anti-achievement attitudes or oppositional orientations. Music tastes in both cities are found to be remarkably similar. Globalization appears to have made hip-hop a currency for status among urban youth worldwide, suggesting that proximity to African American peers cannot explain the taste preferences of New York youth. Students in both cities and of all ethnic and racial groups are more likely to cite the media than peers as influences on their styles and tastes in music. Significant gender differences in musical taste are also found. Boys express a greater taste for rap music and hip-hop style, associated with delinquency by some authorities. However, no evidence that a taste for rap music leads to oppositional attitudes is found, explaining the perception that minority boys are more likely to engage in oppositional cultures.

Keywords:   rap music, globalization, racial group, Americanization, hip-hop style

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