Women: The Protagonists and Antagonists

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As we strived to change the societal norms of how negatively women are portrayed in the music industry we came across many obstacles. For instance, it was hard to argue and stand up for the rights of women when the reality is, most of them choose to objectify themselves in these music videos. But, it is also sad to say that society paints an image in these young girls minds that tells them it is okay for them to show off your bodies, wear a lot of makeup and model their behaviors after these video vixens they see in the media.

While, it’s not okay, it seems as though being a video vixens is what everyone is doing. And even though it may come across acceptable to many, it is actually discrediting women as a whole. Not allowing women to grow in the music industry through their actual talents, but instead by their assets defeats the purpose of creating music. In an example, music videos create a false representation of how women respond to successful men in the industry, as well as how they are supposed to appear.   For example, the majority of video vixens have really enhanced their body image, in order to obtain the most recognition in the industry as well as help their career become successful. This creates a norm for other younger girls and inspiring female artists to feel obligated to follow.

When was talent never enough! Why can’t women rely on just their talent alone? The answer is simple, its because the norms of society say that its not just about the music anymore. Its about selling an image which requires women to look and act a certain way. This often involves being provocative. However, women should be able to rely on just their talent and they shouldn’t have to succumb to the standards set for them in society.

This means things need to change. For example, the way male artists rap and sing about belittling and taking advantage of women needs to stop. Or even the way the male rappers depict women as sex objects instead of human beings in their music videos. However, we understand that men are not entirely to blame. Even female artists such as Nicki Minaj, Rihanna and Miley Cyrus need to start setting better examples for young girls and women. How can we expect male music artists to respect women if they don’t even respect themselves. So stop dancing on poles, stop twerking, stop wearing provocative clothing and stop letting others demean you. And we get it, “sex sells” but when did women become objects that could be bought and sold? The way women are portrayed in the music industry has got to change before this issue becomes a problem bigger than it already is.

We understand that change is not going to happen over night and it may not ever happen. But people need to be aware and informed that sometimes it is not just a catchy beat, but lyrics that diminish the character of women as a whole or that the women in these music videos could easily be your sister, cousin or friend. We would like to see the media show a better and more positive representation of women in the music industry. For example, popular singer and songwriter, Beyonce, is consider one of the most beautiful, sexiest, and talented women in the music business and she doesn’t have to wear provocative clothing or dance on poles to receive this recognition either. When it comes to women in the music industry, we are not asking for much, all we are saying is that we want beautiful, smart and educated women not video vixen, sex objects and symbols.

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