Popular songs are increasingly recognized as cultural artefacts and as indicators for societal developments, as can be seen by the fact that Bob Dylan received the Nobel Prize for Literature in 2016. Song lyrics are especially interesting, since they depend on the intention of the authors/performers as well as on the acceptance of the audience. The social import of popular music, such as rock and rap, is rather seldom analyzed in detail. This is why we have decided to arrange a symposium on the topic that took place at the University of Helsinki in October 2017. This volume collects contributions from this symposium by Hans Giessen, Tomi Huttunen, Hartmut E. H. Lenk, Michael MĂ¶bius, Allan Moore, and Bo Petterson.