Excellence / Purpose / Woman

Ariana Grande: The New Face of the Young Feminist

I immensely enjoyed the feminist-charged open letter music star Ariana Grande made on social media. Apparently, the singer/actress has had it with the double standard women are still experiencing to this day.

arianna grande feminist rampage

Ariana Grande’s open letter on social media.

This standard, as she points out in her letter, is the significant disparity women are (knowingly or unknowingly) being thrown at today such as: sex, dating, relationships, and being valued as men’s property/conquest/trophy. She mentioned that she has so much better things to talk about other than who she’s seeing (or not seeing). At only 21, this young woman who is rising as one of the most watched out artists of her generation, is on the right track to empowering herself (and consequently, her young female fans as well). Brava Ariana!

For a woman who is much older than Ms. Grande, I’m glad that younger women today are beginning to sense that one-sidedness and becoming vocal about it. I applaud her for bringing her thoughts out into the open. However, young as she is, she has more to learn from her much experienced sisters. With that said, I would like to take the time to point out her seemingly contradicting letter vis-a-vis her current professional situation.

In an industry where sex sells, Ms. Grande will have to take a firm stand against the kind of lyrics that degrade women. In her recent hit ‘Love me Harder’, you would know immediately that this was a love song. However, there are ‘love songs’ and there are ‘love-making songs’:

“And if in the moment you bite your lip
When I get you moaning you know it’s real
Can you feel the pressure between your hips?
I’ll make it feel like the first time…”
– ‘Love me Harder’, Ariana Grande

From the lyrics above, the listener of the song immediately gets a mental picture of what the song is about. In my humblest opinion, if she were really adamant in battling this double standard, then her principles should reflect in her work as well. The young Ms. Grande should go beyond what normally ‘sells’ in her workplace.

In this day and age, there are still so many female singers who continue to make songs that sexually degrade both women and men. With young female artists like Grande who are now perceptive to that kindle of consciousness, they will be setting the tone for the kind of music young people will be listening to years ahead, which eventually translates to future culture.

I’ll try to cut her some slack on her lyrical choices for now. But hey, I’ve got to hand it to the girl, she’s on the right track.

Advertisements

One thought on “Ariana Grande: The New Face of the Young Feminist

  1. There’s a distinction between sexy, and sexually objectifying. I agree that Ariana Grande should branch out of “what sells” (if she wishes to), but I also have to acknowledge that our current society is more than willing to place women into sexual roles and objectify them, so it’s always a bit of a risk being a woman who is very sexual, because everyone’s just jumping at a chance to objectify you. Take Janelle Monàe’s ‘Yoga’ for example. In that song, she explicitly states “You cannot police this”, and yet a lot of people still interpret the song as Monàe “putting out”, and allowing people to objecify her.

    I think it’s a bit problematic to automatically lump sexual art as sexually //objectifying// art, which is what I understand from the latter part of this article (feel free to correct me if I’ve got it wrong).

    It’s great that Ariana Grande’s speaking about these botched standards, especially seeing as she’s a popular figure, and she does need to take care that her lyrics not only don’t fall into the realm of objectification, but that they aren’t so completely coloured with her class, white, cis-normative, thin and able-bodied privelege, that they begin to portray an exclusionary version of feminism.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s