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Women & Hip-Hop

Natalie & Sonia COMN3590 Feminist Perspectives on Media

Natalie Davis

on 13 March 2013

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Transcript of Women & Hip-Hop

Women & Hip-Hop Women & Hip-Hop:
Controversial Female music artists have always been controversial; especially Black women in hip-hop.

“Beez in the Trap” has dual & conflicting messages: promotes hard work & derogatory language towards women. Things to ponder Is Nicki’s video and her image an example of self-objectification?

Perhaps it shows Black female empowerment?

Or, maybe she's a victim of patriarchy? Overview of Presentation 1. Gwendolyn Pough’s “Hip Hop Soul Mate.”

2. Focus on female emcees of the 80s
and 90s.

3. Music video clip.

4. Conclusion question. Hip-Hop & Love Intertwined bell hooks: “Love is the answer to freeing Black women from oppression and exploitation.”

Hip-Hop culture and rap music provide a starting place for discussions on love.

Pough: 4 recurring themes found in female hip-hop music... Importance of the Female Voice
& Mastery in Women’s Rap Began in 1980s. MC Lyte, Queen Latifah, and Salt-N-Pepa compete with male rappers.

"Answer/Dis Raps” talked back to misogynistic male rappers.

1985: Doug E. Fresh and Slick Rick:“The Show,”
Salt-N-Pepa respond with: “Showstopper.” 1990s: female voices in hip-hop more prevalent.

Queen Pen writes: “Girlfriend.” About a sexually aggressive woman wooing another woman from her man.

Queen Pen uses the power of her voice as a female emcee to tell the story of same-sex courtship.

Lyrics are objectifying, but challenge homophobic ideals of hip-hop. Heterosexual courtship most common form of expression amongst female hip-hop artists.

1990s: Notorious B.I.G and Snoop Doggy Dog releasing derogatory songs.

At the same time, Mary J. Blige emerges with “Real Love,”-- a song that counters their message. Hip-hop soul emerges: Started primarily with Blige . Blends R&B with rap.

Always a challenge for women to enter the masculine space of hip-hop. However, hip-hop soul breaks down these walls.

Hip-hop soul: softer version of hardcore lyrics of other Black female emcees. Hip-hop soul emerges when hip-hop generation plagued by crack, AIDS, and Black-on-Black violence.

Other issues affecting hip-hop generation at this time: inter-coastal hip-hop rivalry; LA riots ;OJ Simpson murder trial.

Blige’s love songs offer a space for healing. 1990s : women rappers begin to embrace their sexuality.

Most notably: Lil Kim and Foxy Brown. Male rappers: Luke and Snoop Doggy Dogg extremely misogynistic lyrics.

Lil Kim and Foxy Brown provided their own sexualized lyrics that caused controversy.

Appropriate “bitch” and “hoe.” Similar to male rapper’s use of “N” word.

Foxy and Kim boast about sexual exploits just as explicitly as male rappers. Foxy and Kim’s lyrics dual and conflicting.

Both women deeply haunted by troubled past.

Prostitution, lack of father figure.

Insecurities about being dark-skinned Black women. Foxy Brown and Lil Kim’s face same issues as many Black women.

Poverty, abuse, and insecurity. These issues have affect on their lyrics. When you look at sexualized images of hip-hop artists like Foxy Brown, Lil Kim, or Nicki Minaj do you see them as women who are empowered or do you see them as women who are victims? Heterosexual Courtship Heterosexual Courtship
"Hip-Hop Soul" Heterosexual Courtship
"A Space for Healing" Black Female Public Displays of
Physical & Sexual Freedom:
"Foxy & Kim" Black Female Public Displays of
Physical & Sexual Freedom:
Sex, Sex, Sex! Black Female Public Displays of
Physical & Sexual Freedom:
"Sexuality & Insecurity" Black Female Public Displays of
Physical & Sexual Freedom:
"Art Imitating Life" Lil Kim Video: "How Many Licks" http://www.slack-time.com/music-video-2813-Lil-Kim-How-Many-Licks Hip-Hop Vs. "The Dis Song" Importance of the Female Voice
& Mastery in Women’s Rap "Queen Pen" "Pop That Coochie!" "Who's got the
illest pussy on
the planet?" THANK YOU! Hard Work Bitch! "Real Love"
Full transcript