Illicit Content in the Nigerian Hip-Hop: A Probe into the Credibility of Music Censorship in Nigeria
Advances in Sciences and Humanities
Volume 2, Issue 6, December 2016, Pages: 63-69
Received: Sep. 22, 2016; Accepted: Oct. 8, 2016; Published: Oct. 18, 2017
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Endong, Floribert Patrick Calvain, Department of Theatre and Media Studies, University of Calabar, CRS, Calabar, Nigeria
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Most Nigerian popular musicians have made sex and sexuality dominant themes of their musical production and veritable “baits” used to attract an ever growing prurient public of fans. Despite the presence of various forms of censorship mechanisms in the country, obscenity - as a form of language and artistic/esthetic expression in both lyrical text and pop video - is now perceived as a functional trend and a “tradition” in music composition and performance. The prevalence of obscenity in music production irrefutably brings to the fore the question of the effectiveness of music censorship in Nigeria. Based on a desk research approach and a textual analysis of some hip-hop songs, this paper explores the pervasive use of pornography in Nigerian music production and goes further to interrogate the credibility of music censorship in Nigeria. This, it does through revisiting the various music regulatory organs/forces and assessing their effective functioning. It argues that the radical cultural changes in the Nigerian society - provoked by globalization and western cultural imperialism – warrant the rethinking and (re)definition of the obscene and thus, the rethinking of strategies to censor music. It advocates more radical and dissuasive measures (sanctions) – approaches other than banning songs from radio/TV broadcast – in order to effectively combat prurience in the musical production. These radical sanctions may include the severe repression of the distribution of sex explicit musical content in the whole country as well as the repression of the performance and promotion of such music in contexts where children are present.
Obscenity, Nigerian Hip-Hop, Music Censorship, Sex
To cite this article
Endong, Floribert Patrick Calvain, Illicit Content in the Nigerian Hip-Hop: A Probe into the Credibility of Music Censorship in Nigeria, Advances in Sciences and Humanities. Vol. 2, No. 6, 2016, pp. 63-69. doi: 10.11648/j.ash.20160206.12
Copyright © 2016 Authors retain the copyright of this article.
This article is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License ( which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
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