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Eminem Makes a Controversial British Invasion
Contributed by: Chris Richburg
Posted on: February 6, 2001 12:25 MST
Filed under: Rap


It should be no surprise that Eminem's jump into the British mainstream comes with his usual share of controversy.

Wall of Sound reports that students at Sheffield University have banned the American rapper, calling him anti-gay. The campus radio station will not play his music, the school's newspaper will not review his CDs or concerts, and people wearing Eminem apparel at the university's dance club will be turned away, according to London's Daily Telegraph.

"There was clear evidence of a flagrant breach of our policy toward gays. We are trying to reduce homophobia," said Neil Foster of the student union board, according to the paper.

The ban was triggered by several students' complaints about the rapper's lyrics, which include derogatory words toward gays. These lyrics have caused a stir stateside as well. The Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation announced a protest of Eminem to be held outside the Feb. 21 Grammy Awards in Los Angeles, where Eminem is up for four trophies.

But not everyone at Sheffield agreed that the ban was the right move. "We argued till we were blue in the face that we're all over 18 and unlikely to have our opinions about homosexuality influenced by the lyrics of a singer, but it didn't do any good," said Dan Morfitt, head of music at the university radio station.

Eminem, who is now touring in Europe, will arrive in England this week for several shows.

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