The inner-battle waging inside you when you're a feminist who enjoys rap is REAL. I'm a huge fan of '90s hip hop and rap, but it's hard to sing along with old Biggie lyrics that call women bitches and hoes. Granted, there's plenty of rap out there that focuses on, you know, non-misogynist things, but much of rap, the associated imagery and rap culture is tied up in the objectification of women. So BuzzFeed investigated what would happen when feminists watch '90s music videos. The feminists in question aren't as unforgiving as you'd think. For instance, they acknowledge the "kitsch" of "Baby Got Back" vs. the crass objectification and blatant inequality in "Pop That Pussy" (although I'm surprised no one noted the rapey aspect of the men "controlling" the women in this video).
There's definitely a fine line between empowered female sexuality and gross objectification, but there is a line, and there's a way for women to writhe about half naked without it being some sex-crazed man's fantasy. Some might object to me saying that, but even as a feminist, it can be nice to not take everything so seriously, and realize that while yes, damaging things do occur in the imagery of popular culture, some of it (emphasis on SOME) can be okay, and even fun. It's just important that we can discern that, and cut back on the things that are reductive and embrace a more positive, inclusive view of the female body. ANYWAY. Here are some of the best reactions to the music videos:
1. "Baby Got Back" by Sir Mix-A-Lot
2. "Pop That Pussy" by 2 Live Crew
3. "U.N.I.T.Y" by Queen Latifah
4. Reflections on the rap genre generally
Watch all the women opine below: