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Perceptions of Lyrics based on Music Category and Perceiver's Race
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by Juan Zapatel and Stella Garcia-Lopez* - University of Texas at San Antonio
The study investigated perceptions of lyrics as a function of perceivers' race and the music labels attached to them. Lyrics were presented to Anglo and Hispanic participants as black rap, latin rap, alternative, or Christian music. Afterwards, participants responded to questionnaire items that assessed attitudes about the lyrics and perception of the artist. Results showed, as predicted, that lyrics labeled black rap were viewed more negatively than latin rap, alternative, or Christian. That perceptions were more positive for lyrics labeled Christian than rap or alternative was also supported. The other result, that Anglo more than Hispanic participants perceived lyrics labeled black rap unfavorably than in other categories, was found for the dependent variable of degree of lyrics' influence on teenagers.