How Pop Culture Reflect Our Society’s Values

Table of Content

‘Hip-Hop remains an enigma, a clarion call, a cry of ‘I am’ from the youth of the world.’ James McBride. Popular culture is the entirety of ideas, views, attitudes, images, and other events that are in the mainstream of culture. It is intended to all people of all age groups and influences our thoughts, behaviors, trends, etc., and can include songs, movies, celebrities, food, and literature. It is a defining aspect of most people’s lives. As a result of this, it can create a lot of pressure to adapt and to fit in. Everyone has at least some amount of desire to fit in, a search for self-approval. Our social media reflects this as nearly every site has some way of gaining self-approval. The fact of the subject is that we grow up with it, and we shape it, it defines our generation. Popular culture is capable of influencing one’s attitude toward certain topics and cultures.

Popular culture is the combination of all the aspects such as beliefs, attitudes, and ideas that are found in a particular culture. Music has been an essential part of our lifestyle and culture for many years. Music is what people adapt to their lives resulting in the change of their own culture and adopting a popular culture. Various cultures use music for many perspectives of their lives, for religious purposes, for celebrations, for sorrow, for relaxation, and comfort. Music connects with many people and reaches them in ways that words cannot. James McBride, in his essay, Hip-Hop Planet, reveals how he spent his life disliking the culture of hip-hop, but after some research and personal knowledge, he had a change of heart. McBride’s purpose is to shine positive enlightenment on hip hop culture and move his audience to have a shift in perspective like him. He adopts a thoughtful and relaxed tone in order to consider the many effects of rap and hip hop. McBride attempts to persuade readers to listen to hip-hop music. He reveals how hip hop music is important in history and how it has taken over the music world. He came to realize that hip-hop, a genre that he didn’t believe was music, became one of the most known genres in the world.

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Popular culture has an undeniable impact on how society perceives itself. An aspect of pop culture that may serve to explain society significantly as both the affecter and the affected is the genre of magazines of celebrity’s bodies targeted at young women. Daniel Harris, in his essay, Celebrity Bodies, reveals the negative effects of Hollywood and society on each other. Harris’s purpose is to inform the audience of the negative effects and blames society for what happened as people see ‘beauty.’ He adopts a critical tone in order to show what has happened in society and seems displeased about what Hollywood has become. Though these advertisements are targeted as the representation of our society’s adolescent females, they have a significant influence on how teens view and construct. Almost everyone is exposed to social media and is passionate about learning about every aspect of a celebrity’s lives. Popular culture has also negatively impacted society by how it makes women view their bodies. Many women that are young and older suffer from body image issues because of the advertisements they see in magazines, social media, and Televisions. The author Daniel Harris writes about how absurd Hollywood can be. Hollywood affects young, and people of all ages in ways they don’t realize. It isn’t only Hollywood’s fault, but the everyday Americans that watch these people and idolize them.

When examining the mass cultures, one needs to keep in mind the balance between how much as a society affects the way popular culture is assembled and to what extent popular culture impacts the way we view ourselves and shapes our beliefs. David Denby, in his essay, High School Confidential, reveals how teen movies and how they relate to reality and how pop culture reflects our society’s values. Denby’s purpose is to talk about the stereotypes that are cast in movies directed towards teenagers and what that effect has on teenagers in reality. He adopts an informative and critical tone by finding fault in the teen movie genre. The high school movies have an impact on popular culture by the style they are wearing, commercial products, lifestyle, language, and images portrayed in the film. Most teen movies follow certain criteria that some may feel has little reflection on what high school is truly like, while others may feel these movies are exactly what high school is like.

Popular culture is characterized by different groups of people and a constant change. The documentary Super Size Me by Morgan Spurlock discusses that food is very much a part of popular culture and the beliefs and customs in culture influence eating habits. This Documentary explores the United States growing epidemic of both obesity and diabetes. McDonald’s is the development by philosophies of fast-food restaurants that are experimenting with more parts of the American community as well as the rest of the world. The film director Morgan Spurlock attempts to capture a pop culture phenomenon on film. His objection to McDonald’s is clear, and his argument is considerably for accusing McDonald’s as the cause of American obesity. Spurlock ate nothing but McDonald’s, three times a day for thirty days, and imitated the exercise sample of an average American by only walking a few thousand steps a day. It reveals the increase in obesity in America and, more importantly, the influence of fast food on popular culture was often challenging to take on board. For example, more people had a difficult time remembering the Pledge of Allegiance than McDonald’s advertising, referring to the ingredients of a Big Mac. Spurlock has captured a pop culture trend on film but in tackling the subject of America’s obsession with fast foods. The significance of having a healthy diet and an active lifestyle after watching the Super Size Me documentary has significantly changed. The restaurant’s advertisements target people of every age, and they also send a powerful message that is affecting the health of many children and adults. They have attracted the attention of adults by offering a list of choices at low cost, resulting in a very advantageous position for these companies. Since many people pay more attention to how they can save money than to how damaging it can be for one’s health, the Super Size Me Documentary shows how misleading restaurants can be, by promoting a product without informing the effects that it can have.

Individuals in modern society are highly exposed to the media, and most of them want to be like the celebrities they watch on the media. Nevertheless, popular culture impacts society in both a positive and negative manner. Positively, hip hop music is significant in history and how it has taken over the music world. Negatively, the society has made both women and teenagers idolize some celebrities imitating unacceptable behaviors, and change the way they view their bodies and the way they eat. All that pop culture should influence the thoughts, trends, actions, and tastes among other living style aspects of the people in society in a positive manner.

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How Pop Culture Reflect Our Society’s Values. (2022, Feb 07). Retrieved from

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