I have a confession to make. It’s controversial you know. I kind of feel like I’m cheating on Beyonce by saying this but ermm… I’m sort of in love with Iggy Azalea.
In fact, in my head we’re in a 90’s American high school drama and ‘going steady’. If you haven’t heard of her already (you must be living under a rock! Ho ho ho. Insert more tired clichés here). She is the incredi-talented one woman rap machine that has just hit the mainstream. Yes, if you’re Shoreditch-level cool you probably heard of her when she was fresh from the womb and are bored already, but to be honest, you’re probably too busy polishing your non-prescription ‘Geek’ glasses to read this anyway.
So why do I love her? Well aside from the obvious (ie. her almost illegal levels of sass) and the fact that her album is my work-out music du jour, she could be exactly what is missing from our lives. Let me explain.
She doesn’t give a monkeys. She’s been described by many as the new ‘potty mouthed’ lady on the block because of the ‘vulgar’ nature of some of her lyrics. This is quite obviously not a dig at her use of profanities. I’ve never heard Lil Wayne being described as needing his mouth washed out with a bar of Dove, but clearly the mere combination of swearing + vagina is just incomprehensible to some.
I think I need to expand on that last comment as it’s a biggie. Iggy Azalea is breaking down barriers with her seriously monstrous stiletto heels. She’s only just starting out and already attaining huge success in a genre of music usually dominated by males. Sure, she is a hot blonde- and god knows we love one of those in the west- but nonetheless, this rapper is proving that people don’t necessarily fit into the neat little boxes we try to squeeze them into.
She’s classy. When she was harassed by a misogynistic interviewer of douchebag proportions about her sex life in this interview she reacts with levels of class usually only reserved for royalty and Michelle Obama. It wasn’t necessary for her to react in that way and it would’ve been perfectly understandable if she’d walked out/ put those well-loved profanities to good use, but she was the epitome of professionalism. [On a side note, isn’t it slightly worrying that this man is reaching thousands of listeners on a daily basis, spreading his woman-hate globally?] But many of the comments below this clip reflect my thoughts; would this happen to a man? It saddens me that some people have such narrow-minded vision as to suggest that because her videos are ‘provocative’, all sense of privacy regarding her sex life is thrown out the window, along with common decency.
She’s a feminist icon! Or is she? Do I care?? So often new ladies on the music scene are heralded/ scrutinized for being a ‘new feminist icon’ and this, as I’ve pointed out before, is not something I necessarily agree with. I don’t think it’s fair for the entire female population to place their hopes of emancipation on one person, whoever that might be. Nonetheless, I do think it is helpful to celebrate those who seem to be actively empowering women. Feminists often get swallowed up into a black hole of over complication- within the process of defining objectification- so I’m not going to go into depth about how the lady in question dresses. All I will say is, when I watch her videos I don’t feel sad. I don’t feel sad about the over-sexualisation of women and I don’t feel sad about myself. Iggy emanates confidence and takes ownership of herself and her sexuality. Something that women are implicitly told to conceal. Women aren’t supposed to enjoy sex, remember?
I kind of want to high five her (and I also wish that people still ‘high-fived’). When I listen to her lyrics I feel like I could dead lift twice my body weight (I obviously can’t, that would probably kill me) and, in general, take on the world.
The paradigm of objectification is both complex and fluid and I don’t have any intention of becoming a Feminazi, deciding what women should feel empowered by. To me, she just seems like a 2013 brand of Girl Power I can really get along with. One with much more swearing and less of Geri’s knickers.