Misogyny in the hip-hop genre

Jene Thomas – News Editor

In a society where the songs that continuously play on the radio refer to women as “hoes,” it brings up the question of how women are portrayed in music, especially within the hip-hop and rap genre.

Vochan Fowler, sophomore and business, said that women are seen in a negative light by rappers and artists.

“Of course it’s negative,” he said. “All they talk about is how they use [women].”

Due to the diverse nature of each individual song, all hip-hop songs could not be generalized as a whole.

But according to Elite Daily, there has been a long history of bashing women within the genre. In 2013,  Elite Daily came out with “The 15 most misogynist lines in rap history” with artists varying from Snoop Dogg and Jadakiss to Lil’ Wayne and Kanye West.

Despite his relationship with Kim, Kardashian-West, often in the media spotlight, West has often been scrutinized by media outlets such as Elite Daily and the Huffington post for his blatant misogyny. With lyrics that focus on sex like, “Black girl sippin’ white wine/Put my fist in her like a Civil Rights sign,” from his song “I’m In It,” he and other artists may continue to see widespread reactions.

With sex being a major topic in many songs throughout genres other than hip-hop, it is in rap music that a lot of derogatory names for women come into play. When rappers like Lil Wayne say “These hoes want that hose pipe/So I give all these hoes pipe,” women take to the media to express their outrage. In Joi Ruth Orr’s article in the Huffington Post, she said the content dehumanizes both the rapper and the listener.

Freshman political science student Gina Holmes said that it is not all hip hop that carries on this message of misogyny, but it depends on the artist.

“I think certain songs aren’t that bad,” she said. “If you listen to Drake’s songs, they’re not going to be like Future’s songs. There are some songs that aren’t bad and others that portray this certain stigma and message of misogyny.”

James Hightower, a senior sports management major, said that the lyrics and content in hip-hop have gotten better over the last decade.

“I think probably 10 years ago, it was all about booty shaking and sex,” he said. “[Women] were sex symbols. Now with people like Nicki Minaj out there, they get more praise and respect.”

Females rappers like Nicki Minaj and Missy Elliott label themselves as feminists in an effort to reverse the stigmas that hip hop has created. Minaj’s lyrics in “Truffle Butter” said that she’s the highest selling female artist and how she does not need a man to take care of her. However, despite the attempt at raising a woman’s status, Emely Castro, a freshman social work major said that women still aren’t respected, at least not as much as their male counterparts.

“I feel like people underestimate them,” she said. “They think that only men can rap.”

As some rappers stand behind the message of women empowerment, there continues to be an overwhelming about of allusion to sex and degradation towards women, most evidently seen through hip-hop lyrics today.

Photo Credit: Dyllan 


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