Rihanna on the Throne
Agency in Pendulum
It’s easy to say that Rihanna’s music video for her hit single “Pour it Up” is yet again further sexualizing the black female body – with her revealing outfit, provocative dance moves, and four, dressed equally as alluring, black female back-up pole dancers. However, we can argue that Rihanna’s video (which she co-directed) is empowering […]
How Low Can We Go?
Pendulum by FKA twigs is a song about overcoming a challenging relationship, and the video is a piece of performance art. The video begins with the a shot of the artist’s mouth as she sings the opening lyric “I’m a sweet, little love maker.” Her position is revealed slowly; she’s suspended in the air bound tightly by […]
Economic Politics Behind Lemonade
I remember this Ludacris music video being one of the first “hip-hop/rap videos” shown to me. I don’t recall the exact context but I remember thinking it was as strange as the rappers name. The overt oversexualization of the girls dancing almost felt comical how wrong it was. The scantily-clad dressing and objectification, both in […]
Oddisee talks to NPR about The Iceberg
After watching Lemonade I was struck by its power. For a moment, I felt myself questioning: why hasn’t everyone watched this? Part of what stopped me from watching it in the months after its release was its cost. I figure that I am not alone in not wanting to drop $15 dollars on the visual album, […]
Lookin Ass and the Oppositional Gaze
http://www.npr.org/2017/02/18/515388491/oddisees-the-iceberg-has-a-trove-of-stories-beneath-its-surface I just caught this excellent interview with rapper Oddisee on NPR’s morning edition about how he draws on his perspective as an African American and Sudanese American in today’s political climate in his new album, The Iceberg. I’ll link the audio of the interview when it’s up later today. Definitely worth a listen!
“Lookin Ass”: Nicki Minaj Embodies an Oppositional, Intersectional, Black Feminist View
Going off of Melissa’s initial posting of Nicki Minaj’s music video, “Lookin Ass,” I was immediately reminded of Bell Hooks’s, “The Oppositional Gaze.” I was particularly struck by Melissa’s analysis, “In Nicki’s video, close ups of her body, specifically her butt, represent the typical sexualization of black women. This makes the critique that follows in […]
African American Women in Music Videos
Nicki Minaj: “Lookin Ass” The video I chose to represent a couple of the pieces we’ve read in the last week is one of my favorite music videos of all time, “Lookin’ Ass” by Nicki Minaj. Aside from the fact that the visuals of the video are amazing, the themes from this video represent some […]
If I Were A Boy – Beyoncé. Does It Do Enough?
In her essay “The Oppositional Gaze: Black Female Spectators,” bell hooks discusses the relationship of black women to mass media that renders them invisible. Whereas previous scholarship by Laura Mulvey put forward a binary of possible viewing positions centered on identification with either the male/dominant or the female/submissive viewpoint put forward in media, hooks discusses […]
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AWpsOqh8q0M (Links to an external site.) In the music video for Beyonce’s 2009 song, If I Were A Boy, Beyonce switches gender roles with her boyfriend for one day. She becomes a police officer who ignores her partner’s breakfast in the morning and flirts with her co-worker. Meanwhile, her partner sits at his desk job looking at wedding […]