Well, both Beyoncé & Jay-Z and their good friends Kanye & Kim Kardashian have recently welcomed little girls into the world. Blessings all around for both of their new families. If you ask anyone that knows me they can tell you all about my strong opinions on Beyoncé being the feminist voice of our generation. And as both couples now have to deal with the ramifications of societally imposed gender constructs on their daughters, here’s a little experiment: a juxtaposition of the lyrics of Beyoncé (her new album is phenom if you haven’t already listened to it) with those of Kanye, to really get a good feel of media perceptions of gender.
Note: in terms of being misogynistic and sexist towards women via lyrics and media, I am not here to say that Kanye is the main or even one of the big culprits of such behavior. He’s actually one of the better rappers for rapping about things other than exclusively objectifying women, and I feel that’s an important qualifier here. In any case, please enjoy the different perceptions of gender espoused through mainstream music in the following thought experiment.
You can take a wild guess at who wrote which lyrics.
Stop running up my tab cause these drinks is not free
You drunk and hot girl
Please don’t fall asleep baby we almost back
Please don’t throw up in the car we almost crash
Oh now you sober, how’d I know you’d say that
You drunk and hot girl.
Mama said, ‘You’re a pretty girl. What’s in your head, it doesn’t matter
Brush your hair, fix your teeth. What you wear is all that matters.’
Pretty hurts, we shine the light on whatever’s worse
Perfection is a disease of the nation, pretty hurts pretty hurts
You’re tryna fix something but you can’t fix what you can’t see
It’s the soul that needs surgery.
18 years, 18 years, she got one of your kids – got you for 18 years.
I know somebody paying child support for one of his kids
His baby mama’s car and crib is bigger than his
You will see him on TV any given Sunday
Win the Superbowl and drive off in a Hyundai
She was supposed to buy your shorty TYCO with your money
She went to the doctor got lypo with your money
She walking around looking like Michael with your money.
If I were a boy, even just for a day
I’d roll outta bed in the morning and throw on what I wanted and go
Drink beer with the guys
And chase after girls
I’d kick it with who I wanted
And I’d never get confronted
‘Cause they’d stick up for me.
She asked me what I wished for on the wishlist
Have you ever asked your bitch for other bitches?
How we’re smart enough to make these millions
Strong enough to bear the children
Then get back to business
See, you better not play me
Oh, come here baby
Hope you still like me
F*** you hate me
You see there’s leaders and there’s followers
But I’d rather be a dick than a swallower.
Blonder hair, flat chest
TV says, ‘Bigger is better.’
South Beach, sugar free
Vogue says, ‘Thinner is better.’
She said Ye can we get married at the mall?
I said look you need to crawl ‘fore you ball
Come and meet me in the bathroom stall
And show me why you deserve to have it all.
Which gender would you rather be as a listener?