Kanye West & Taylor Swift: Can I Be A Rap Fan And A Feminist?

Kanye West has been pulling a great deal of ‘Kanyes’ lately. Following the release of his latest album in February of this year, he took to Twitter more than usual to unburden his oh-so-great mind of all the oh-so-weighty thoughts he carries around in it.

Recent gems include his begging, yes, actually begging, Mark Zuckerberg for money and his admonition that the word ‘bitch’ is none other than a form of endearment in hip hop.

The latter tweet may not have garnered such a huge response (after all, the prevalence of misogyny in hip hop is really nothing new), were it not aimed at Taylor Swift. No one calls Taylor a bitch, obviously. Nor claims to take responsibility for her fame.

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A lot of new things have emerged in the meantime, including Kim Kardashian’s epic takedown of Taylor on her Snapchat yesterday in which she unveiled a video Kanye West had taken of the phone call (which Taylor previously denied happened), in which Taylor Swift appeared to give Kanye the go-ahead to use the lyric.

But the fact remains the same, as a hip hop aficionado, the question of whether it’s possible to be both a hip hop fan and a feminist is one I’ve been trying to reconcile for myself.

A few months ago, while in Miami, I found myself in the presence of… let’s just say I was in the presence of some of the biggest and best hip hop currently has to offer thanks to a friend who is high up on one of the rapper’s payrolls.

As a hip-hop fan it was potentially one of the coolest moments of my life. But as a female it was truly harrowing and heart breaking and eye opening all in one.

It wasn’t necessarily the girls jiggling and gyrating their naked bodies while the rappers looked hazily, lazily, blankly on. It wasn’t even when they dropped to their knees and crawled on the floor to pick up the dollar bills that had been thrown at them.

It wasn’t in the way one of the rapper’s entourage couldn’t, for the life of him, remember my name – even when I repeated it maybe 100 times. It wasn’t even in the way he said to me, ‘look B, you’re a gorgeous girl but there are many of you. No, I don’t remember your name, does it really matter?’ while licking his lips and drawing me closer.

It was all of it. It was the overwhelming feeling that I, and all females, were literally nothing other than disposable vaginas.

Read the rest on The Debrief here.

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