Hip-Hop Plays a Vital Role in Prevention of Substance Use and HIV for African-American Youth

by mwall2 on April 14, 2014 - 9:34pm

             The recent qualitative studies “Hip-Hop to Prevent Substance Use and HIV among African-American Youth: A Preliminary investigation”, have illustrated how hip-hop can be very influential to the African-American, middle school children in metropolitan areas in the northeast of the United States to impede “substance use and HIV risk behaviors”(Turner-Musa Et Al. pg. 351) amongst this group.  The researchers Turner-Musa, Rhodes, Harper, and Quinton discussed how they could decrease the use of alcohol and drug substances and unsafe sexual behaviors through a hip-hop based intervention.  This intervention increases their awareness on the subject and could help them make smarter decisions.  The researchers feel after they were done with the study, “it will improve their skills and knowledge about risks of substance use and HIV, establish negative attitudes against it, and improve drug resistance skills in the next six months”( Turner-Musa Et Al. pg. 355).  I agree with this study to evaluate African-American youth.

            The article stated the study, “included 23 boys and 45 girls who completed baseline and 6-month assessments.  Ninety-One percent of the participants were African American, 4% were Hispanic and 5% identified themselves as white or mixed race.  Sixty-two percent were in the eighth grade and thirty-eight percent were in the seventh grade” (Turner-Musa Et Al. pg. 355).  The researcher handed out an 88-item survey to all the intervention participants.  The survey was composed of various scales to measures drug, alcohol substances and the understanding of sexual activity and HIV/AIDS.  Also their attitudes against the subject. Further, there was a comparison group who was in the program.  They were there to take the survey too but did not get the intervention.  If there were siblings, they were situated in other groups.  The results showed “68% never used alcohol, in the past 30 days (34%), for marijuana in the past 30 days (97%).  Also 67% felt low to moderate risk in using drugs and 75% felt drug use was very wrong.  25% had sex once in their life and 10% were involved in unsafe sexual behavior” (Turner-Musa pg. 359).  Also from the intervention and comparison group, there were no distinct differences from each other.  The reason why this probably occurred was because the students that were intervention-based talked to the comparison-based group causing the contamination of the results a bit.  These students were in the same school.

            The main purpose for this study was to “target at-risk groups” (Turner-Musa Et Al. pg. 362), because the youth are the future of our society.  To support this purpose, “in 2004, 50 % of adults and adolescents diagnosed with HIV were African American, even though they account for only 12% of the U.S population.  In 2002, HIV/AIDS was the leading cause for African-American woman age 25-34 and second-leading cause for African-American men age 35-44” (Turner-Musa Et Al pg. 362).  This is why the researchers want to enlighten the African-American youth because statistically they are dying off from a terrible disease later in life.  They feel what better way to show it through hip-hop.   Even though media says hip-hop shows bad behavior, violence, provocative women and disrespect them.  It still shows how it can have a great message that a person just has to listen.  There are certain rappers who have been in these urban city, youth’s situations that wish they had interventions and someone teaching them the knowledge of substance use and dangerous sexual behavior.  So they convey their outreach through their music.  I support this recent study because African Americans and hip-hop have a bidirectional influence on each other, which each progress each other.   



Turner-Musa, J.O., Rhodes, W. A., Harper, P., & Quinton, S. L. (2008).  Hip-Hop to Prevent Substance use and HIV Among African-American Youth: A Preliminary Investigation. Journal Of Drug Education, 38(4), 351-365. DOI:10.2190/DE.38.4.c