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GARNER: Hip-Hop music and black women

By Sarah Renee Garner
On November 15, 2018

With one of the front page stories being about J. Prince’s visit to GSU, I thought it would be a great idea to have this week’s Voices page dedicated to the culture of hip-hop.


So, I began to think about what angers me about hip-hop, and the first thing that came to my mind was the treatment of black women.


It is no secret that some lyrics attributed to hip-hop music are demeaning to women. It is also no secret that black women are starting to take over hip-hop. What both of these cultural fads have in common is the treatment of black women in hip-hop music, and the culture of hip-hop.


From what is trending, it is evident  that we as a culture are more concerned with popularity, not talent.


With female rappers, we do not automatically go out of our way to support them. We expect them to “prove” themselves to our ears, when we do not require the same for male rappers.


If we did,  male rappers like Lil Pump, Lil Peep, and Tekashi69 would not exist, and they would not be tarnishing the culture and legacy of hip-hop.


While I understand, that hip-hop culture is not synonymous with black culture, hip-hop was created as an art form. Hip-hop was created by black people who were turned away from other forms of expression. So, it is infuriating to watch talent be continuously looked over because of someone’s gender, when there are men out here who should have never been in the booth to begin with.


Differently, when looking at the video vixen era, it was an era indeed. While it was never in my dreams to be a vixen, I always wondered what that was like.
A documentary called  “VIXEN,” talks about the lives of well known video vixens. In this documentary, they spoke about the treatment they were subjected to, but they also spoke candidly about how much they loved the attention.


Videos like ‘Tip Drill’ display black women as objects to be consumed by hyper-masculine men. That song came out during the peak of the video vixen era.
While I am not slut shaming video vixens, and their decision to be objectified, almost all video vixens have all said that they regretted their actions, despite whatever monetary amount they received.


They go into detail about the psychological toll that it took on their lives, ways they had to get certain video roles, and how the men treated them while they were on set.


It is unfortunate that these women were subjected to this treatment, even though they did choose to be apart of any particular video.


We have to do better by black women in hip-hop. Lyrically, some of these new female rappers are completely slaughtering these male rappers, and all they want is the same respect given to their male counterparts.


While I understand their viewpoint, I challenge all women to stop formating themselves to fit someone else’s criteria of what deserves respect.
Create that lane, and make them feel you.

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