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Words and Music$
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J. G. Williamson

Print publication date: 2005

Print ISBN-13: 9780853236191

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: June 2013

DOI: 10.5949/UPO9781846314445

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PRINTED FROM LIVERPOOL SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.liverpool.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Liverpool University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in LSO for personal use.date: 25 September 2021

Eminem: Difficult Dialogics

Eminem: Difficult Dialogics

(p.73) 3 Eminem: Difficult Dialogics
Words and Music

David Clarke

Liverpool University Press

The music of white rapper Eminem (Marshall Mathers III) has been denounced by women's groups, gay activists and politicians for its supposed expression of violence, misogyny, homophobia and foul language. Using Eminem as a case study, this chapter explores how liberals must deal with words and music that they identify as Other, especially when that Otherness is significantly problematical. It discusses the relationship between pluralism and postmodernism by considering an idea proposed by Gary Tomlinson in his article ‘Cultural Dialogics and Jazz’, in which he calls the relationship a ‘parallactic conception’. It also considers dialogism as a valuable model for negotiating cultural pluralism. The chapter concludes with an analysis of how Eminem, and by implication rap music, could be seen to do cultural work other than simply providing material for alienated teenagers to exact revenge on their parents.

Keywords:   Eminem, rap music, words, music, Otherness, cultural pluralism, Gary Tomlinson, dialogism, teenagers, parents

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