Scorpio Risen

NME…and a rant

Posted on: 4 March, 2007

How could they have awarded Kate Moss the sexiest woman award?!
For starters, she’s a model, not a musician, so how is she applicable for an award from a music magazine?!
She is not a responsible, or a positive role model for young girls or women; there’s the whole cocaine thing, and the fact that she’s super skinny, and yet she’s won an award for being sexy. Sexiness is, according to much of our pop culture, a desired and valuable attribute all women should have, and should sweat and slave to achieve. Therefore this sends out the message that drugs are sexy, and that to be sexy, you need to be skinny. And an idiot for some dopehead.

On the other hand, Beth Ditto would’ve been a much more deserving winner. And it would’ve sent out a much more positive message: that there’s not just one idea of sexiness, you don’t have to be thin or conventional looking. You can speak your mind and be yourself, and that’s sexy. I think she’s beautiful and brilliantly unconventional.

But no.

And it is something of a pipedream, because the media is so stuck on certain concepts of womanhood, and telling women they should be a certain way. They refuse to think outside the patriarchal box.

I also have another bone to pick with the whole sexiest woman award thing. Although there is a sexiest male award, this isn’t given as much attention as the sexiest woman award. It’s as if to say that the only place for women in music is to be sexy. Even though there are various wonderful, strong, talented female musicians and singers.
The thing is, women in alternative music are not given as much press as males. I haven’t bought a Kerrang mag in aaaaages, but women were hardly ever present or mentioned, and when they were it was often in an objectified, stereotypical way. There’s an article on the F Word which will go into this in more detail than I will in this particular post:
While men are hailed as heroes, or gods, in rock music, women barely get a mention outside of groupie anecdotes.
And mainstream music – don’t even get me started. Videos for pop and r’n’b, and hiphop etc are just a minefield of misogyny. Even when it’s a female band, or a female artist, women are still presented in objectified, sexualised lights. And often the lyrical content isn’t that much better.

The thing is, music often reflects raunch culture – particularly R’n’B, and HipHop etc, whose lyrics are often damn right misogynistic. Women in music videos are all shiny and skinny, sometimes with large breasts, gyrating against a pole, or simulating a sex act or something. But that’s just not what sexiness is about to me. The whole idea of “sexiness” needs one hell of a re-branding. It should be subjective, it should be idiosyncratic, it shouldn’t be constricted and restricted and limited and squashed into one small box. I know there are some women who feel sexy with their breast implants, and when they’re gyrating against a pole: fine. But to say that to be sexy you have to pander to male fantasy, or to what the media constantly screams at you to be, isn’t sexy. You can be sexy if you’re slim, curvy, fat. The point is, that sexiness isn’t an aesthetic, and it shouldn’t be marketed as such, especially since it is marketed as just one aesthetic. To me, sexiness is more about being comfortable with yourself, being able to speak out, not conforming to one ideal. So maybe sexy isn’t the right word for it.

This post has been something of a rambling, unstructured rant: we’ve gone from Kate Moss to Ariel Levy almost. Damn I loved her book!


1 Response to "NME…and a rant"

this is the same magazine that has pete doherty on it’s front page saying “no. 1 icon” or whatever it is …

no surprises there, amy.

so rock n roll!!!


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