It’s a beautiful day, but I’m crazy sore. I have hospital & Dr appointments that I can’t miss. What I really need is some motivation. I require some banging female voices to spur me on. With my favourite feminist anthems blasting in my ears I can conquer today. I thought perhaps some of you might like an extra spring on your step too.Enjoy.
I’ll start with Not my name by the Ting Tings. It was a huge hit a few years ago & is a great summer tune. For me the stand out line has to be the slow, exasperated ‘ are you calling me darling’. When I listen to that lyric i get the feeling she’s ready to call bullshit. We’ve all been there, it’s cool to hear the feeling expressed in such a funky way.
No list of feminist songs would be complete without you You don’t own me. I prefer the original by Lesley Gore. This song is so deliciously ahead of it’s time. It’s lyrics are an absolute declaration of female empowerment. This chick will do what she pleases & anyone who doesn’t approve can suck it.
I’ve always had a fondness for Madonna’s Music album. I think this song is the reason. What it feels like for a girl is an oft overlooked feminist classic. The premise of the song being that it’s acceptable for girls to dress or act like boys because society deems being male a prize. However, it’s humiliating for men to look or be called girlie because being a women is deemed inferior. Message aside the song itself is beautiful. Somber & sultry; Madge at her best.
My next choices earned a place in my heart for similar reasons. Firstly it should be said that everything by Salt N Pepa is awesome, but this track is particularly dear to me. None of your business is a blistering attack on slut shaming before the phenomena even had a name. I was 13 or 14 when this hit the charts. I attended a catholic school & was surrounded by numerous gender double standards. That a woman should have sexual agency was not a concept I had come across. That females could enjoy fucking for fuckings sake was an idea that was just about dawning on me. Salt n Pepa did me a huge service with their blatant message. In a world where slag banded about by my piers & sex was deemed sinful by educators None of your business was a revelation.
Female sexual pleasure is key in my next anthem too. Charli XCX’s Body of my own is an ode to masturbation. It’s a rare topic in pop, even rarer in relation to women. At 34, I’ve long since discovered the joys of having a wank. I know it’s natural. I know it’s healthy. I know it’s the best the way to work out which buttons you really want pressing. For me this is a catchy pop piece confirming what I’m already sure if. However, I suspect for many teenage girls a song like this will offer much needed reassurance & encouragement. Sadly we still live in a society that makes girls feels embarrassed about enjoying their own bodies. I’m all for a song that says, Hey, you don’t need anyone else. You own your body. Explore it. Love it.
Destiny’s Child’s Independent women has always been one of those songs that will get my arse on the dance floor. I love everything about it. When it was released I was a student struggling to make ends meet, but doing it all on my own.Three women jubilantly declaring themselves self sufficient was exactly what I needed. Having my hard work affirmed every time I went to a club was bliss. 16yrs later I still depend on me & i wouldn’t have it any other way.
These are just a few songs that make me feel proud to be woman in charge of my life. I’d love to know which tunes make you feel like you can rule the world.