Music in the Context of Transformation in Communication Mediums and Social Structure: Rap and the Case of Turkey

Ayhan Dolunay


Music, an effective means of communication, reaches the masses by coming to the fore on the basis of different genres in different periods within the framework of changes in cultural structure. After the Arabesque music, which has influenced the masses in Turkey on a fatalist basis for a period with themes such as poverty and inability to reach their loved ones; many years later, rap music, which on a contrary basis and includes elements such as wealth, defiance, and rebellion, has managed to influence the masses. This has been accelerated by digitalization, in other words, new media that replaces mainstream media, and especially video sharing platforms. In this context, the study seeks answers to the questions of why rap music, which comes to the fore with the social changes in Turkey, is of such interest and what elements its content consists of. The study has originality in the context of the determined sample and provides scientific novelty in the relevant field. The most watched music videos of Ceza, Sagopa Kajmer, Norm Ender, Contra, Anil Piyancı and Ben Fero, which have a significant number of video viewing rates and followers on YouTube, were identified and detailed reviews were carried out; code and themes were determined, and content analyses of related lyrics were carried out. In the study, the content analysis carried out under five themes formed with 13 codes determined has the following results: pessimism and experience (n = 61, 20.3%), self-seeing and challenge (n = 124, 41.3%), obscenity (n = 49, 16.3%), system criticism and metaphors (n = 32, 10.3%), popular culture effect and positive perspective (n = 34, 11.3%). Songs in the approach that contain System criticism and metaphors were also listened to, but often offensive, obscene spoken songs were presented by the respective rappers, concluding that consumption of this style was preferable. Within the framework of these findings, concrete solution proposals have been presented in detail.


Keywords: cultural transformation, music, communication mediums, new media, YouTube, rap, Turkey.




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