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Abstract

Abstract

The aim of this paper is to examine the functionality of impoliteness strategies as rhetorical devices employed by acclaimed African American and White hip-hop artists. It focuses on the social and artistic function of the key discursive element of hip-hop, namely aggressive language. The data for this paper comprise songs of US African American and White performers retrieved from the November 2017 ‘TOP100 Chart’ for international releases on Spotify.com. A cursory look at the sub-corpora (Black male/ Black female/ White male/ White female artists’ sub-corpus) revealed the prominence of the ‘use taboo words’ impoliteness strategy. The analysis of impoliteness instantiations by considering race and gender as determining factors in the lyrics selection process unveiled that both male groups use impoliteness strategies more frequently than female groups. It is also suggested that Black male and White female singers employ impoliteness to resist oppression, offer a counter-narrative about their own experience and self (re)presentation and reinforce in group solidarity.

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/content/journals/10.1075/jlac.00062.del
2021-05-25
2021-12-04
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  • Article Type: Research Article
Keywords: identity ; hip-hop ; corpus linguistics ; impoliteness ; critical discourse analysis
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