January 29, 2009

The relationship between dancehall music and juvenile delinquents in high schools


            One of the major social problems throughout the years is the growing number of youth who are considered to be juvenile delinquents. One of the countries which experience the issue of juvenile delinquency is Jamaica.  In the country, the incidence of juvenile delinquency as measured by the number of youths (children and adolescents) brought before the court for indictable offenses grew by 6% from 1, 600 in 1985 to 1,700 the following year. Accordingly, the growth of juvenile delinquency in on country like Jamaica has been influenced by different social factors and one of the perceived social aspects is with regards to music genre. Primarily, this research proposal suggests conducting a study in identifying the relationship of dancehall music and juvenile delinquents in high school.


Research Objective

The notion that music genres and juvenile delinquency have a significant relationship is still a very new subject that should be given attentions. Hence, this research aims to provide helpful findings that will determine whether dancehall music has a relationship on becoming a juvenile delinquent of youths in Jamaica. More specifically, this study aims the following objectives:


  1. describe the present status juvenile delinquency in Jamaica;
  2. identify the characteristics of high school students considered to be juvenile delinquent
  3. determine if dancehall music has a significant effect to high school students in terms of academic and behavioral development;
  4. Formulate ways on how to solve the issue of juvenile delinquency among high schools.


Research Questions

In general, this study intends to examine the relationship of dancehall music with juvenile delinquency for high school. So as to gather relevant information, this study will attempt to answer the following queries:

1.                  What is the current status of the chosen juvenile delinquency in Jamaica

2.                  What are the characteristics of high school students considered to be juvenile delinquent?

3.                  Did the dancehall music result to affect negatively academic performance or behavior of high school students?

4.                  How can juvenile delinquency be solved in Jamaica?


Literature review

            Accordingly, dancehall is a type of popular music in Jamaica which developed in the late 1970s. The dancehall music was initially developed as a more sparse and less religious and political variant of reggae than the roots types which have dominated much of the music scène in the 1970s (Barrow & Dalton, 2004). Several studies have considered how dancehall music can be related to juvenile delinquency. Accordingly, the role of popular culture, specifically music like dancehall music, though convey less liberatory messages often conveys encouragement as well as incentive to feed addictions, and these are being instilled in the mind of the youth. This addiction is most commonly known as bling addiction, which is the addiction on expensive but status-proving materials such as luxury goods which is said to have through crime, prostitution, violence and even transaction sex (Hernandez-Ramdwar, 2008).

            There are studies that relate dancehall music to become a scapegoat for different problems at home and the surrounding environment of the youth. By being surrounded with people who can understand their feelings through the music that they like, most youth are becoming more attracted to join different groups which sometime result in their exploitation ot different violence, crimes and other social issues.


Significant of the study

            This study will provide information to the parents, educators and other parties or groups involved with the regards the possible effect music to children and adolescents.  Learning the relationship of other social aspects such as music that affect the behavior of an individual to become juvenile delinquents  will assist parents, educators and departments in establishing better programs, policies, and approaches for the academic and behavioral development of juvenile delinquency and can develop policies to solve the issue of attracting juvenile delinquency through music.

Further, this study will be helpful in providing better and more meaningful lives to youngsters at-risk by means of better knowing their their individual needs and problems.

2. Methodology

2.1. Introduction

The study intends to investigate the relationship of dancehall music and juvenile delinquency. For this study, primary research and secondary research will be used. Moreover, the descriptive research method will be utilized. In this method, it is possible that the study would be cheap and quick. Nonetheless, it would be very hard to rule out alternative explanations and especially infer causations. Thus, this study will use the descriptive approach. This descriptive type of research utilizes observations in the study.  Descriptive research method is used to gather information about in order to describe a particular condition, phenomena or event (Creswell, 1994).

Primary research will be conducted using the data from "Child Behavior Checklists" as well as from survey questionnaires that will be given to the children's parents or family members. Basically, the data from "Child Behavior Checklists" will be obtained through pre and post intervention interviews.  The secondary data will base from the recent literatures related to dancehall music and juvenile delinquency.

In this research proposal, the researcher aims to contribute to the current literature on the relationship of music to juvenile delinquency by means of determining the impact of dancehall music in terms of their academic and behavioural development. The researcher believes that the outcome of this study can serve as an eye opener to people involved and affected by the selected research problem.

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