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Wednesday, 7 February, 2001, 16:54 GMT
Eminem: Poet or bigot?

Eminem performs on stage
Eminem has divided audiences who feel his work is either that of a satirical genius or a sexist homophobe.

His songs are a mix of offensive language, violence and self-effacement.

But are Marshall Mathers' words Miltonic or just mediocre? Here are a selection of his more printable lyrics:

"You can't run from me Kim. It's just us, nobody else! You're only making this harder on yourself. Ha! Ha Gotcha!" - Kim

Eminem describes the violent death of a woman who shares the same name as his real-life wife.

"You think I give a damn about a Grammy. Half of you critics can't even stomach me, let alone stand me - The Real Slim Shady

Eminem attacks the record industry, criticising it for marketing fabricated stars. The artificial nature of the industry is a common theme in his music.

"Now follow me and do exactly what you see. Don't you want to grow up just like me! I slap women and eat 'shrooms then OD. Now don't you wanna grow up to be just like me!" - Role model

Eminem takes the copycat nature of fans as a starting point, but he's not afraid to poke fun at the cult surrounding his own fame.

"I'm bout as normal as Norman Bates, with deformative traits." - Role Model

Amidst the violent imagery and offensive language, Eminem threads in some intricate rhyming structures.

"And all of this controversy circles me. And it seems like the media immediately points at me. So I point one back at 'em. But not the index or the pinky or the ring or the thumb." - The Way I Am

The singer defends himself against all his detractors with a clever verbal/visual backlash.

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07 Feb 01 | Entertainment
Stage set for Eminem
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