A qualitative content analysis was conducted on the lyrics of 79 R&B and Hip Hop songs from 1956-2013 to identify the ways that these Black male artists expressed sensitivity. The songs were determined by Billboard Chart Research Services, and Phenomenology provided the theoretical foundation on which the themes were identified. Qualitative analysis of the lyrics revealed Black male sensitivity in R&B and Hip Hop to be based on the following four typologies: (a) Private Sensitivity; (b) Partnered Sensitivity; (c) Perceptive Sensitivity; and (d) Public Sensitivity. Private Sensitivity occurred when the Black male is alone; feels lonely; disguises or hides his tears from his romantic partner or others; and expresses a determination to not cry and/or continue crying. Partnered Sensitivity occurred when the Black male encourages and/or connects with his romantic partner, other men, and/or members of the Black community through crying. Perceptive Sensitivity was demonstrated when Black men acknowledge the tears shed by others, and shed tears themselves while being conscious of society's expectation that men suppress emotion and/or refrain from crying. Public Sensitivity was exemplified when the Black male cries publicly and verbally expresses that he does not care what others think of him. Qualitative examples are provided to support each of the aforementioned themes.
© The Journal
Chaney, Cassandra and Mincey, Krista D.
"Typologies of Black Male Sensitivity in R&B and Hip Hop,"
Journal of Hip Hop Studies: Vol. 1
, Article 9.
Available at: https://scholarscompass.vcu.edu/jhhs/vol1/iss1/9