“Eminem’s Lyrical Personae: The Everyman, the Needy Man, the Hegemon”

Hickey Moody, Anna. 2009. “Eminem’s Lyrical Personae: The Everyman, the Needy Man, the Hegemon”. Culture, Society and Masculinities, 1(2), pp. 213-223. ISSN 1941-5583 [Article]

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Abstract or Description

This article examines the lyrical personae of the gangsta rapper Eminem. Eminem's White/Black persona can be seen as interchanged with two lyrical alters-Marshall Mathers the everyman character and Slim Shady, the psychiatrically unwell and needy young man. Eminem's deployment of lyrical alternation invites a performative view of masculinity, as simultaneously commodified and multiplied around an absent center. The gendered persona is thus precariously instantiated as a function both of gendered and racialized stylistics of musical genre, and of the tensions between identity and artistic impersonation in general. The case of Eminem suggests that a studied alternation of impersonations allows self-parody of the macho rapper but only while capitalizing on misogynist lyrics and securing a White man's success in a Black industry.

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Departments, Centres and Research Units:

Educational Studies



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Date Deposited:

21 Jul 2015 09:05

Last Modified:

21 Jul 2015 09:05

Peer Reviewed:

Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.



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