This is a revamp and slightly different perspective to a post that was published on this blog in July 2012.
There are so many different ways to think about feminism and all the feminist strands that therefore exist when you talk academic feminism (some of the main ones include liberal feminism, post-colonial feminism, radical feminism, material feminism, cultural feminism, socialist feminism–marxist feminism, black feminism, third-world feminism, post modern feminism, and so on and so forth). But that’s definitely a post for another day.
There are feminist activists who have a very limited perspective as far as what it means to be feminist, and who can be a feminist, and there are others who don’t police the term and are open minded in as far as one believes in gender equality.
Even though at heart of it all, I truly am a believer in that both men and women can and should choose to fight for gender equality in terms of what they know and what they believe, because my personhood is so attached to this movement, I at times do find myself policing. For this post however, I have chosen not to police what it means to be feminist, and have chosen instead to extend that term and no include this particular message from Nicki Minaj as feminist because guess what? IT IS!
Now, before moving forward, let me get something clear. The most critical detail for anyone reading this post to understand is that feminism is first and foremost a political and personal commitment to fight for equality between the sexes. In all of its theoretical and practical underpinnings, feminism is aimed at establishing equal political, economic, social, cultural and personal rights for all peoples. It is a POLITICAL movement that is aimed at making the world a more inclusive space by incorporating and centering the voices of peoples who have been marginalized, as a result of patriarchy. It is political because it is about changing practices, about changing policies, and about changing systems of governance that have left minority groups at the margins of society, starting with women. And so on and so forth.
With that having been said, whatever strand you associate yourself with, or however you have chosen to conceptualize feminism, more power to you for choosing to be an activist and for fighting for gender equality! Most importantly, thank you for reading on as I continue to make my little point.
So, let’s talk NICKI MINAJ! People, feminists included, always have tons to say about this woman! Some people love to love her, whilst others just love to hate her. You have those who argue that by owning her sexuality Nicki Minaj is normalizing women’s ownership of they own bodies — YAY! Nicki for being feminist and advocating for choice and freedom of expression. But, you have of course others who argue that she in fact doesn’t own her own sexuality and is in fact yet another female body that is being overly sexualized for economic profit in what is the patriarchal world of music production — Oh oh Nicky! Don’t let ’em use you girl! Anyways, so is Nicki Minaj a feminist? I have no idea. Does that answer matter to this post? I don’t think so, but you tell me. As far as I’m concerned, she had a feminist moment right here, and I it is worth the watch over and over again.
Regardless of where you stand, or where I stand half of the time, (which I’m not even sure where I stand half the time as I have a really complex, off and on, love and hate, relationship with most pop culture icons may I add) Ms. Minaj in this video “DOES ME” PROUD ya’ll! Like I said, in this particular moment right here, I have chosen to embrace Nicki wholeheartedly as a sister in the feminist movement because she hits all the points!
Without positioning her argument in any theoretical framework, Nicki Minaj discusses some very pertinent issues which feminists continue to rack their brains about: societal perceptions about gender performance, acceptable/unacceptable gender performance, male-female power presentation and implications, gender roles, expectations and standards. What she speaks is the truth and with that, this feminist right here just wants to say, YOU GO GIRL! This time around you did it for the “cause” and I am so PROUD:)
So, feminist or not? Would love to hear your thoughts!
-Unravel Away Artist-