Rappers like Lil Kim and Foxy Brown have used their sexuality and bodies to sell records. Unlike MC Lyte and Queen Latifah, Foxy and Lil Kim have promoted their personas as being sexy, naughty, and rough females and embraced their sexualized images. Most of their lyrics reflect similar themes and subjects as male rappers. The obsession with money, power, and respect is manifested in their raps as they struggle to establish themselves as rap icons despite their femininity. The rap game is dominated by men who gain power by having as many women as possible and maintaining a reputation for being desirable and sought after. Females, especially heterosexuals, have to approach rap with an agenda to preserve their interest in men while also having the power to be sexy. It in interesting because many of their verses would be acceptable if they were not women. They choose to rap about the same topics as their male counterparts, but are targeted for being too explicit. Unlike their male counterparts, they put a female heterosexual perspective to “fucking bitches and getting money.” In this sense, the word bitch is replaced with the word “nigga,” but is used to refer to the same type of person. There are actually many different definitions of the words ‘nigga’ and ‘bitch’ but in simple terms, the word “bitch” could be replaced by the word “nigga” to make distictions between gender.

Although Christina Aguilera is not a rapper, her message about double standards between men and women is one that is often talked about by female rappers. In Christina’s video, Lil Kim’s verse reiterates this inequality.

In this video, Aguilera confronts a man after he grabbed her butt. He thinks that his behavior is appropriate because she is wearing short shorts and he liked what he saw. This type of aggressive molesting behavior is not rare and many women are sexually assaulted by men daily. Women who wear “revealing” clothes are not asking to be felt up, but many men mistake their appearance for “wanting” to be harassed. It is shocking that Aguilera speaks up and says something to the man who doesn’t consider the consequences of his actions. The two draw a crowd and it is the women versus the man in the middle of the street. The women and men are divided by gender, each group uniting with their sisters or brothers.

I think that the lyrics are especially important because this is one of the few songs that specifically points out how men and women are viewed differently when it comes to appropriate and acceptable behavior. A woman touching a man in a private area is a happening that is never really talked about, not that it never happens, but the chances are much slimmer for a man to be sexually assaulted. Women are less likely to violate the space of a man but more likely to have their space invaded.

This song is empowering to women because it shows that women have the power to speak out against males who mistreat them. When I saw this video for the first time, I was shocked that Christina Aguilera was so blunt and open about the topic. I said to myself, “Finally a woman who acknowledges the struggles of all women and puts the issue out there. ” There are many double standards in our society that are rarely addressed and publicly opposed. I could think of no better person to be featured on the song than Lil Kim who is the symbol of equal opportunities for women. Although she is hyper sexualized, I think that she is usually seen as an icon of female empowerment. There are many controversial sides of Lil Kim but I think that her presence in this song adds to its rebellious tone.

I wish that we could walk away like Christina Aguilerra does at the end of this video from this sexist society, but the world and its standards are not as easy to escape from.

Advertisements