Hip-Hop's Greatest Rivalry
Hip-hop is a term recognized by many, but understood by few. To mainstream audiences today, the term has become a synonym for rap music; however, hip-hop in actuality is a relatively new cultural movement that "began amongst urban (primarily, but not entirely, African American) youth in New York [City]" ("Hip-Hop"). Soon after the birth of hip-hop in the mid 1970s, the cultural movement quickly spread throughout the United States and today has come to be known to the entire world. Hip-hop is constantly changing and although it has mainly appealed to the youth, its audience is continually growing. Hip-hop culture has four elements - graffiti art, breakdancing, DJing, and MCing/rapping (Ayazi-Hashjin 6,7). A main cause of the birth of hip-hop was the civil rights movement in the United States.
Black consciousness and pride swept the streets among African Americans, especially those living in cities after the start of the civil rights movement.
Prior to the birth of hip-hop, the Black Panthers were a powerful group, and The Nation of Islam was beginning to organize. Black culture was becoming better known through outlets such as magazines and jazz. As Black Americans were identifying with each other more and more, many other closely-knit black communities were forming, especially in New York City. An important consequence of this was the formation of gang culture (Ogg 23). In the 70s, street gangs became very popular among the Black American youth. Gangs became a way of representing Black pride for many. Young Black Americans looked to join gangs because of the kinship they could form with others who lived in a similar lifestyle. As the number of gangs grew, however, gang rivalry intensified to violence. The Bronx area of New York City in 1970s was thought of to be one of the...