Analysis Of To Pimp A Butterfly, By Kendrick Lamar

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For decades, America has oppressed African Americans due to the color of their skin. Although the country has made many strides in preventing some racial actions, racism still plays a massive role in modern society. Compton rapper Kendrick Lamar released his second studio album “To Pimp a Butterfly” on March 15, 2015. Lamar spoke out against structural racism on this album and made a case for the black culture being at fault for some of the racism they face. His message may not have been accepted by all the masses, but his bold statements sparked new conversations that any artist dreams of doing. Lamar even faulted himself at times claiming to be a “hypocrite” due to condemning white on black violence, but continuing to be violent against the …show more content…
The two tracks “I” and “The Blacker the Berry” display both sides of this battle with remarkable lyricism. “I” is Lamar’s anthem for self-love. The chorus constantly repeats itself with the positive message of “I love myself”. The track contains a message of hope for black people dealing with oppression or even depression. On the other end, “The Blacker the Berry” contains a message of self-hate and the harsh truths of racism. It focuses on an internal struggle that African Americans have when it comes to racism in America. The harsh lyrics of “I mean, it’s evident that I’m irrelevant to society,” shows that Lamar was faced with the perception that he was not important to society in the eyes of the white man. Lamar shows that self-love is often overlooked in the shadow of racism. Hatred is an issue that only magnifies the means of racism. Lamar believes that people of different skin colors should embrace their beauty and ignore the racism to follow their dreams. Hate is a detriment that can only get a person so far. Positivity can uplift a person spirts to where they believe they can achieve anything. Love is the one thing that can defeat the hate that comes with …show more content…
He states that the negative stigma that surrounds the black culture is ultimately their fault. Lamar puts some of the blame on the violent lyrics of rap music like many critics have in recent years. Sullivan states, “Debates regarding the effects of rap music are missing one very critical voice-that of fans. While politicians and other community leaders argue over "how corrupting" rap can be and researchers look at the themes and history of the music, few people speak directly to rap fans asking them what they feel about rap and how important it is in their lives” (Sullivan 609). In other words, Sullivan is saying that violent lyrics may not effect listeners if it is the one thing they can relate to. Although you could place the blame on some of the violent aspects inside of the black communities, America itself is still the main reason for black people being in these predicaments from the beginning. The segregation they experience excludes them from the advantages of the average white communities. Lamar made a strong and convincing argument for his theory, but the blame still seems to go trace back to the white culture that shaped this nation in the first

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