Beyoncé’s Feminism Tour Continues with “Gender Equality Is A Myth!”
I admit, I wasn’t always a Beyoncé supporter. I always felt lost in the trappings of her image. And with limited access to her personality in real life, I just grabbed hold of the tunes of hers that I liked and kept it moving. It’s even fair to say that I was a hater at one point, hating the fact that her job didn’t allow her to be herself, really. If she was to be a superstar, she had to put on a face, like most public-facing roles require you to do. Yep, just fall right into this little box right here and try to maneuver you way out of that one. Can’t be easy when you breathe real air and having real feelings.
So when King Bey dropped her eponymous album, I was a bit surprised because I loved it. Not because of her image that hasn’t changed much, but because of her approach and the fact that it clicked finally for her: Bey finally had enough. But that wasn’t enough for the internets, who then took to trying to rip her to shreds while celebrating her feat to beat the 2013 clock. Whether it was how raunchy (and somewhat cheesy) her lyrics were on “Surfboard,” to how insensitive she was for pulling the audio from the Space shuttle Challenger mission on “XO,” to how not feminist enough she was even with fusing pieces of writer/feminist Chimananda Ngozi Adichie’s Ted Talk on “Flawless,” something had to be wrong..
For me, the choice was simple: Either accept Beyoncé for the complete person she was finally becoming, or be content with a watered down version–a shadow–of who she really is. And I prefer the former, because isn’t that what feminism is partially about? Embracing our sisters as they grow into their own? Cultural architects Joan Morgan and Dream Hampton said it best, but to paraphrase, Let that girl cook.
And she’s doing it. On the heels of the new year, and all of the hoopla surrounding her album’s release, Maria Shriver’s multi-platform nonprofit media initiative, The Shriver’s Report, released its third special report since 2009, in partnership with the Center for American Progress entitled, A Woman’s Nation Pushes Back From The Brink. Keeping in line with the organization’s mission “to modernize America’s relationship to women,” the project features a collection of essays from scholars and prominent public figures, from Eva Longoria to Tory Burch, Jada Pinkett-Smith and even, Lebron James, with most of the pieces driving home issues from single parenthood to equality in the workplace as it pertains to women.
Beyoncé’s contribution? An essay (excerpt above) titled, “Gender Equality is a Myth!” which further proves that this new side of Be ain’t going anywhere.
Download The Shriver’s report here to read Beyoncé’s piece in its entirety now.