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“Music, Substance Use, and Aggression.” Article Analysis

“Music, Substance Use, and Aggression.” Article Analysis

The article being analyzed is titled “Music, Substance Use, and Aggression.” The article is written by a group of scientists led by Meng-Jinn Chen. The research team also includes the scientists as follows: Brenda A. Miller, Joel W. Grube, and Elizabeth D. Waiters. Each of the scholars holds a Ph.D. degree and is an employee of Prevention Research Center at Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation. The research was finished in July 2005, and on July 18, 2005 the editorial office of Journal of Studies on Alcohol received the article itself. The final revision of the paper was made on January 10, 2006. The article was published in May 2006 in the third issue of the 67th volume of the Journal of Studies on Alcohol. In the article under consideration, rap, techno, and reggae are considered the specific genres of music promoting alcohol consumption, illicit-drug use, and aggressive behaviors (Chen et al. 373). The findings are evidenced by a premise as follows. Rap songs have proved themselves to imply a message that circumstantially approves of the audience’s anti-social behaviors. The article being analyzed is structurally coherent as the transitions between the sections are smooth.

The article under analysis can be characterized as properly structured and well-organized. It is split into sections in keeping with the standard guidelines of academic writing. Specifically, the paper begins with an abstract that outlines the paper’s objectives, methodology, findings, and references made. Introductory part is followed by the method’s section. The method’s section is comprised of the following subsections: “Sampling and Data Collection,” “Music Listening,” “Alcohol Use and Alcohol-Use Disorder,” “Illicit-Drug Use,” “Aggressive Behaviors,” “Sensation Seeking,” “Background Variables,” and “Data Analysis” (Chen et al. 374-376). The method’s section is followed by results section. The results section is dived into the following subsections: “Sample Characteristics,” “Bivariate Analysis,” “Structural Equation Modeling Analysis,” “Music Listening and Alcohol Use,” “Music Listening and Illicit-Drug Use,” and “Music Listening and Aggressive Behaviors” (Chen et al. 376-378). The results section is followed by the discussion section. The discussion section represents the analysis and the reflection of the findings of the research itself. Furthermore, the discussion section outlines the primary limitations, discrepancies, and inconsistencies of the experiment, data obtained, and the paper itself. The paper being analyzed incorporates approximately 42 different sources. In other words, the research conducted by a group of scientists led by Meng-Jinn Chen is supported by the findings of prior research conducted by other scholars. In addition to that, the paper under consideration employs the research and data processing methods previously tested by other scholars. Each of the outside sources contributes positively to the authors’ use of logical and ethical means of persuasion. The source being analyzed can be characterized as credible by all means. Cases of referencing occur within the purposed article all though its text. Particularly, all inferences made by the authors of the paper are supported by referring to the prior research in the respective field of study. The authors of the paper being analyzed give credit to each and every study and scholar mentioned in the works cited page by equal measure. The paper being discussed contains quantitative data, such as, for example, numbers, letter values, and formulas. The aforementioned data are incorporated into the text of the paper itself. Hence, there are two tables in the article under consideration (Chen et al. 377, 378).

The evidence that supports the authors’ thesis statement in the paper under consideration is as follows. Firstly, the research presented in the article under consideration is based on the sociological experiment (Chen et al. 374). Secondly, the quantitative data obtained in the course of the experiment provide a solid scientific background for the research itself (Chen et al. 376-378). Thirdly, the findings of the research comply with the laws of the formal logics. Thus, it cannot be denied that the authors of the paper are very well aware of the fact that society, art (music), culture, and ethical concerns are intimately/inseparably related. For that reason, the article seems topical and relatable to the readers a decade after its publication.

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On the other hand, there are some points of controversy in the suggested academic source. Firstly, even though the research itself is experimentally and scientifically evidenced, the scholars themselves tend to overgeneralize the question of the impact of music on human behavior (Chen et al. 373). Furthermore, the scholars’ view of the musical genres specificities is slightly simplistic. Secondly, the experiment itself (as well as the results) is based on self-administered questionnaires (Chen et al. 374). In this particular case, methodology of the experiment casts the doubt on the credibility of the paper itself. It happens so mainly because there is no chance the scholars might check the respondents’ honesty. Lastly, one can assume that the authors of the research being discussed have prejudices concerning some specific genres of music. For example, it cannot be denied that rap, hard-rock, and heavy-metal songs abound with anti-social messages that manifest themselves though music videos mostly. At some point, the scholars claim that rock music videos (along with rap music videos) promote gun carrying (Chen et al. 373). The truth is, however, that rock music is merely a form of creative/artistic sublimation and catharsis. Each aspect mentioned in this paragraph fails to adequately support the researchers’ thesis statement and the inferences they make.
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Tastes differ. So do the persons’ musical preferences. Arts in spite of their form should provoke the thought. One should understand why and for what purpose they make their respective preferences in music, fine arts, literature, or cinematography. One should learn how to critically evaluate a work of art. Only then can one become a connoisseur of arts. Each of the foregoing principles applies to music. As far as the analysis of a work of art is concerned, it is important to admit the following. There are three aspects of significant importance when it comes to the critical evaluation of a work of art. Evidently, each work of art contains a hidden message. Hence, it is important to understand the message behind a song. In addition to that, a recipient should be interested in deducing artist’s intent purpose. Finally, a recipient should be familiar with the expressive means of the respective form of art to be capable of assessing the plane of expression of a work of art. The article under consideration has been useful for me as a research source. Chen, Miller, Grube, and Waiters argue that preferences in arts in general and music in particular are different and they play a significant role. Furthermore, the scholars suggest that one can make assumptions concerning other person’s lifestyle, behavior, and motivations building on their artistic preferences. No specific background knowledge is needed to understand what the article being discussed is about. However, some basic knowledge of theory of music and the basic level of competence about the modern trends in music are needed to understand the purposed article better. The article being analyzed can be characterized as an insightful and credible source. The article as an academic source is worth reading and being used in further research.

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