‘Twerking Is Not Feminism’ Annie Lennox Talks Feminism And Beyonce

'Twerking Is Not Feminism'


by Holly Peacock |
Published on

You’re not a feminist if you twerk, if you take a man's surname, if you like the colour pink, if you...Zzzz.

Yeah right. We're over that now, surely? Well, Annie Lennox's recent comments would suggest otherwise.

Lennox (who, before we start, is an absolute hero and knows her stuff when it comes to feminism and gender politics) was asked in a recent interview with NPR to address that time when she criticized Beyoncé’s version of feminism. GASP!

Not one to shy away from controversy Lennox happily obliged, clarifying what she meant by her earlier comments and spoke, not only about Beyoncé but twerking, naturally.

“I didn’t specifically criticize Beyoncé. I was being asked about Beyoncé in the context of feminism” she said, “twerking is not feminism. That’s what I’m referring to. It’s not liberating, it’s not empowering. It’s a sexual thing that you’re doing on a stage. It doesn’t empower you.”

The thing is, I see her point. I can of course see why Miley attempting to twerk on Robin Thicke’s leg might raise feminist alarm bells and Beyoncé simulating sex on stage might seem like it's actually in favour of the patriarchy but I think it's about time we stop equating sexuality, sexual expression and, eye roll, twerking with being a rubbish feminist.

My point is why are we debating the likes of Yoncé’s feminist status rather than having a meaningful conversation about the specifics?

You know, those things that should be seemingly harder to ignore than twerking. I don't know; say the fact Queen B gleefully referenced a domestic violence scene that featured in a story of Tina Turner's life (see Drunk In Love)

To me THAT is more disturbing than watching a Beatle Juice looking Robin Thicke get twerked on. (Although, I’m still trying to get that image out of my mind)

Unfortunately these issues, the real issues, don't spark the same debate or at least not to the same scale. After the initial shock of a few news outlets, the domestic violence reference issue seemed to fade away - but criticising women for twerking and being sexual? That never gets old.

Would we really prefer to tear strips off each other and challenge women's individual feminist status than debate the bigger issues?

What do you think? Tweet your thoughts to @Grazia_Live.

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