Nas- Represent

The contrast between “If I Ruled the World”  and  “ A New York State of Mind” is the way in which wealth and happiness is attained. In one song, one must use violence in order to obtain wealth, In the other, Nas creates a perfect utopia. His ability to play with words to spark change and ignite imagination in his listeners is unmatched. Another song from his Illmatic album that continues to display his poetic delivery of a very intense subject matter (death) as a result of dealing drugs is“Represent”. In “Represent”, we are made aware that being a street criminal comes with a limited time on this planet. What is most intriguing to listener is the acceptance of death as a result.Nas accepts death and almost welcomes it. He accepts the fact that his lifestyle comes with death as a result. In all three songs,not being part of the system and being powerless are feelings the black community does not understand and cannot cope with, but is very ironic that death is a destination that drug dealers are ok with and welcome. “Straight up shit is real and any day could be your last in the jungle” this is a recurring theme we find in the“New York State of Mind” and “If I Ruled the World”.  Taking a step back and analyzing “Represent” the only possible reason why someone would jeopardize their life to gain “stacks” while selling drugs has to be that death cannot be as bad when you are already living in hell. It is in our human condition to desire wealth and people from the projects are no different. If acquiring great clothing “When I dress, it’s never nothing less than Guess”and money “No doubt, see my stacks are fat, this is what it’s about” your life is worth the risk. Like many other rappers have said: “Get rich or die trying”.