Blog

Put your tits away, I’m trying to watch the show

A couple of weeks ago I went to Pemberton Music Festival — a music fest that takes place in a small village north of Whistler, in B.C. It was amazing and perfect in almost every way. Pemberton is overwhelmingly beautiful, even to someone like me, who grew up in B.C., surrounded by the kind of scenery most people only see on postcards. The lineup was fantastic. Watching Kendrick Lamar perform in front of a backdrop of spectacular mountains was mind-blowing. Chance the Rapper, Frank Ocean, and Outkast gave monumental performances. I have nary a critique for the whole festival. Except one thing: I’m tired of the tits. I am positive that this particular complaint will result in a number of people telling me I’m a prudish boob-hater, but in...
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Podcasts

PODCAST: Collective Shout and Talitha Stone take on the virulent misogyny of Tyler, the Creator

Rapper, Tyler, the Creator’s misogynist lyrics have been called “groundbreaking” and “edgy” by some.Defended on account of being “art” or “satire,” fans of the artist and Odd Future, the hip-hop collective he is a part of, are quick to fire back at those who criticize him. Talitha Stone, member of the feminist activist group, Collective Shout recently became the focus of verbal attacks and threats not only from fans of Tyler, the Creator, but from the artist himself. Stone and Collective Shout have called on the Australian government to revoke Tyler, the Creator’s Visa in order to prevent him from touring the country. In response, the rapper spewed a torrent of verbal abuse about Stone at a recent concert, his fans cheering him on. In this podcast episode, Meghan...
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Podcasts

PODCAST: Representing female emcees with Glennisha Morgan

Rolling Stone magazine recently came out with a list of the 50 Greatest Hip-Hop Songs of All Time, which included only three female-fronted tracks. With so many great female MCs out there, why are women so underrepresented in hip-hop and how can we change that? On this episode of Feminist Current, I talk to journalist and filmmaker Glennisha Morgan about women in hip-hop and play some great tracks by female MCs. Glennisha is the founder and editor of Fembassy, a website dedicated to female MCs and women in hip-hop. She is currently working on a documentary about female MCs called Turn Me Up.   Podcast: Play in new window | Download...
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Blog

Hey ladies? Rolling Stone accidentally forgets about women in hip-hop

So Rolling Stone came out with a ‘50 Greatest Hip-Hop Songs of All Time’ list this past week. Though the list includes much hip-hop greatness, there are more than a few oddities — Gang Starr, Mos Def, Talib Kweli, and Pharcyde don’t make the cut, they tacked B.O.B. by Outkast on at number 50 when they could snuck in Southernplayalisticadillacmuzik instead (boooooo), 50 cent is in there but not Souls of Mischief/Hiero, Dead Prez, Fugees, or KRS-One AND they put freakin’ Hypnotize on there — Biggie’s most only annoying track (No forum! Anyway, they already included Juicy so there is no real need to add Hypnotize just because it’s poppy. There are far better tracks to include if they want to put Biggie on the list twice, which I...
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Blog

Angel Haze hits Lupe Fiasco’s misses with “Bitch Bad”

Angel Haze’s intimate and brutally honest track “Cleaning out my Closet” has been making waves as she comes out about the horrific sexual abuse she suffered as a child (I don’t usually do trigger warnings, but this track is extremely graphic and pretty hard to listen to). The track is on her recently released mixtape, Classick, which is awesome in every way. On Classick, she takes on Lupe Fiasco’s attempt at addressing gender politics and misogyny in hip hop. Fiasco’s track, “Bitch Bad” was criticized by feminists and hip hop fans alike because, while he did attempt to critique that which few male rappers do — that is, the gratuitous use of the word ‘bitch’, the woman-as-prop/video ho trend, and the impact of sexualization and objectification on men’s perceptions...
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Hey guess what! Not all rap is misogynist – so stop using it as a scapegoat for the mass sexism and misogyny that exists in ALL music genres as well as in society at large!

Man, I am so sick of people who hate rap music talking about how they justcantstand how sexist it is and ohmygodtheswears! You know why you hate hip hop? It’s because you don’t actually listen to it. And when you do it just happens to be the most mainstream of all hip hop and, unfortunately, that tends to sound a little something like this: I certainly do not wish to pretend that there isn’t very much about rap music that is flawed, to say the least; that much of it does not objectify women and represent masculinity as something that exists in opposition to femininity and demands that females be accessories to male dominated story lines rather than be actors and participants and, er, real people with brains. I...
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If the beat's all right, I will dance all night. And then feel guilty about it?

In and around 1997, my favorite song was “I’m A Player” by Too Short. CLASSIC feminist track. No. Stop. Please don’t look it up.  From  “Me and My Bitch”, to “Blowjob Betty” and on to the many, many sensuous lyrics of Slick Rick and the commitment-phobic prose of NWA, I learned young how to rhyme ‘perm in her’ with ‘sperm in her’ and ‘hoes’ with ‘clothes’, chanting ‘wonder why they call you bitch’ over and over again, thinking ‘ oh gosh, how I wish Easy would rather fuck me!’ I was very, very busy trying, at the same time, not to defend these tracks, because, truly, they are hard to defend and I just didn’t want to go that deep, afraid I would have to acknowledge the hypocrisy of...
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