Is It A Safe Work Environment For Our Workers? Essay

2209 Words Dec 15th, 2016 9 Pages
As a Student Leader in the Grinnell Dining Hall, a large part of my job is to make a safe work environment for our workers. This includes monitoring the music we play in the dishroom. Oftentimes, I find myself only catching explicit, sexist, or racist lyrics as a song ended, leaving me wondering what I missed. This spurred my interest in the possibility of sexist content going unnoticed or unprocessed in music, and the possible consequences this might have. In this paper, I will seek to explore if Grinnelleans, a community highly involved with social justice, find instances of sexism in lyrics of popular songs when listening, and if reading the lyrics thereafter yields any instances of sexism they did not notice while listening. Research has shown that people 's minds tend to wander more when listening than when reading (Sousa, Carriere, & Smilek, 2013) and that systematic processing occurs less when distraction is present, leading to less careful processing of message content (Petty, Wells, & Brock, 1976). If they do, this would indicate a larger problem in our culture, where sexist messages can enter our mind without conscious processing, and therefore cannot be challenged.
It is important to consider the nature of the subjects for this research as well. Grinnell college has a strong community devoted to social justice; if Grinnelleans don 't pick up on these things right away, how would we expect communities that aren 't as actively engaged in defining and understanding…

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