When it comes to modern feminist voices in pop culture, Nicki Minaj has one of the best — and loudest. Whether or not you consider yourself a fan of her music, you have to appreciate Minaj's insistence on drowning out the haters that would try to silence her by continually speaking out on sexism, the experience of womanhood, and — perhaps most refreshingly — on sex; in particular, the fact that women have it, enjoy it and should be thought no less of for it. She discussed this issue as part of the accompanying interview for Cosmopolitan magazine's July issue, and I have to say, I love her even more after reading her comments.
Of course, Cosmopolitan is infamous for its frank (and yes, sometimes ridiculous) talk on all things sex and intimacy, so featuring Minaj seems like a match made in heaven. But unlike some of the magazine's more questionable advice that's appeared over the years, Minaj's straight talk about her approach in the bedroom and the boardroom is worth listening to and learning from, for sure. It's clear that she thinks we deserve pleasure, and the only way to ensure we get it by demanding nothing less. Now that's some real talk.
"I demand that I climax. I think women should demand that. I have a friend who's never had an orgasm in her life. In her life! That hurts my heart. It's cuckoo to me. We always have orgasm interventions where we, like, show her how to do stuff. We'll straddle each other, saying, 'You gotta get on him like that and do it like this.' She says she's a pleaser. I'm a pleaser, but it's fifty-fifty."
The advice Minaj is dispensing is valuable, for sure, but its importance goes far beyond the issue of assuring our own orgasms. In a world where society values a woman's sexuality so long as it's seen and not heard, Minaj refuses to be reduced to the object of men's desire. Yes, she owns her sexuality, and yes, she enjoys feeling sexy. However, that feeling of being sexy isn't determined strictly by the clothes she's wearing or the song she sings; it's about putting her money where her mouth is and making sure that if you want her, you damn well had better make her want you, too. The idea of taking as much as you give can still feel somewhat foreign to women, even in 2015, but Minaj is taking no prisoners and won't rest until we're all firmly in control of our own sexual destiny.
Perhaps most importantly, Minaj wants to send the message that the key to unlocking a woman's sexuality lies not below the belt, but in her brain. As she told Billboard magazine in November 2014, "Sometimes as women in the industry — if you're sexy or like doing sexy things — some people subconsciously negate your brain. They think you're stupid." I think it's pretty safe to say Minaj is one of the most intelligent pop stars — and women in general — out there making waves today. And I, for one, am glad she exists.
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