MDMA (Ecstasy/Molly) Use Among African Americans: The Perceived Influence of Hip-Hop/Rap Music

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African Americans, MDMA, ecstasy, harm reduction, hip-hop/rap music, molly, prevention

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Over the past two decades, the demographic profile of MDMA (ecstasy/molly) users has changed. In particular, African American MDMA use has risen in some cities. One explanation of this new trend is the drug's recent popularity (as molly) in hip-hop/rap (HHR) music. Several top rappers endorse the drug as a way to have fun or get women "loose." There are currently no studies, however, that investigate the extent to which African American MDMA users listen to HHR music or the influence that these pro-MDMA messages have on their use of the drug. To address this gap, the current study used survey data to (a) identify the extent to which HHR music is listened to by African American MDMA users and (b) assess the perceived influence of HHR music on their decision to begin using. Qualitative interview data are also presented to contextualize the influence of these messages on their use of MDMA. The findings of this study suggest that African American MDMA users are high consumers of HHR music and that pro-MDMA messages in HHR music are influencing their expectations of the drug and their decision to initiate use. These findings add to the limited amount of research on African American MDMA use and have the potential to inform future interventions.

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Journal of Ethnicity in Substance Abuse