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Social, Political, and Economical Environment

Essay by   •  July 6, 2013  •  Essay  •  1,016 Words (5 Pages)  •  1,891 Views

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Artifacts of our own cultures surround us. From art and music to architecture and literature, from philosophy and religion to laws and economics, we live among cultural artifacts that have deep roots.

A term used in social sciences such as ethnology, sociology, and anthropology is known as a cultural artifact. Anything created by humans giving information about their particular culture: users and creators. These particular artifacts may provide information about economics, technological processes, and social makeup. The cultural artifact that best represents the culture in which I live in today is art and music. Visual art and music should be placed side by side which is relevant to the African Diaspora. African American music is rooted in the typically polyrhythmic music of the ethnic groups of Africa, specifically those in the Western, Sahelean, and Sub-Saharan regions. African oral traditions, nurtured in slavery, encouraged the use of music to pass on history, teach lessons, ease suffering, and relay messages. During slavery, Africans in America blended traditional European hymns with African elements to create spirituals.

In the 1800s, as the result of the blackface minstrel show, African American music entered mainstream American society. By the early twentieth century, several musical forms with origins in the African American community had transformed American popular music. The music genre, hip-hop (disambiguation) was developed during the 1970s in New York. There are many styles of dance as well as clothing associated with the culture of hip-hop music. Even though hip-hop has spread to other cultures, this style of music expresses the individualism and uniqueness of the African American culture in which it was originated. In the South Bronx, the half speaking, half singing rhythmic street talk of 'rapping' grew into the hugely successful cultural force known as Hip Hop. Hip Hop would become a multicultural movement. The dance, known as the "Harlem shake" for instance, was originated in Egypt by mummies (Med.Umich.edu, 2009). These mummies did not have the freedom of their limbs. Therefore, they shook. During this time, they were all wrapped and taped up and only shook in order to move. This dance is characterized by wild jerking of the arms and upper body. Although, originating way back from the Egyptian time, the Internet has given much credit to a man known as Al B back in 1981 for inventing the original Harlem Shake. It was once referred to as "Albee". However, in an interview, he explained the original roots of the dance (InsideHoops.com, 2003). This artifact is anticipated as being passed to future generations due to the popularity of not just the dance itself, but for the love of hip-hop and dance period. People of all ages know hip-hop. There is not a wedding, banquet, graduation, birthday party, club, or park in the urban community that does not enjoy the hip-hop genre. Kids as young as a year, to older adults with great grandchildren have their hand in as far as being a user and contributor of this artifact; spreading it from generation to generation. Basically, I feel that it will never die, but only change. As culture changes, the evolutions that the hip-hop dance

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