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Making Feminism “GET WET”

While everyone is blabbing about the Miley Cyrus’s, the “big” pop star names, and the so-called “feminists” of our generation that are dominating the media’s attention, I would like to take some time to point the spotlight toward other, relatively unexplored, views held by contemporary artists—such as, Krewella’s Jahan Yousef.

Krewella’s Jahan Yousaf

Krewella’s Jahan Yousaf

Krewella’s slogan, “Get Wet” is a rallying call to action for feminists and music enthusiasts. Krewella demands that their followers get wet, let loose, and “not give a fuck.” The whole point of their gimmick encourages women to fully embrace their sexuality without feeling ashamed. Jahan, herself, is loud, vulgar, openly sexual, and quite frankly, conducts herself exactly how a “lady shouldn’t.” She refuses to apologize for who she is. She expresses curiosity about why, “our so-called ‘enlightened,’ free-thinking society won’t allow women to explore their sexual desires without condemning them.” Jahan goes on to explain how it has become “accepted and ubiquitous for male artists, like Robin Thicke, to use sexually explicit representations of women in their content, but when a female artist exploits this image of herself , she is brought down.”

I could not agree more. Forget the stupid phenomenon surrounding Miley Cyrus’ fashion choices, new-found sexuality, and tongue-ing. Let’s think about the kind of message we are sending to our youth when society decides that “male artists are allowed to live out their explicit fantasies of women in music videos, but when the female artist is in control and chooses to embrace her sexual side, she is punished?”

While Feministing dubbed this year a “rough year for feminism in pop music” due to the fact that “Miley Cyrus is called a feminism icon because she took her clothes off and shook her ass,” I am arguing that this year was a BREAKTHROUGH for feminism. I would like to implore people and writers (like Feministing’s Sesali Bowen) to think outside of the “Is-Miley-Cyrus-really-what-feminism-has-come-to?” box, and introduce a little more—wait, A LOT more—optimism when thinking about feminism’s role in pop culture. All is not lost, my friends. Especially, when you have amazeballz women like Jahan, and her sister Yasmine, publicly exclaiming:

“If fairy tales and teen magazines teach a girl at a young age to have submissive behavior, that her focus in life is finding her true love over finding happiness in independence, that she can’t FUCK—she can only MAKE LOVE to her prince charming, then it’s no wonder we can’t accept a female star freeing herself of the rules of femininity that society continues to perpetuate”

This is the kind of artist, person, and role-model that this world should be dubbing a “feminist icon”: Someone who is truly passionate about the role of sexism in the music world and beyond, someone who is concerned with gender fairness and the strictly defined boundaries of sex, and someone who fully understands the idea that femininity is controlled by the male dominated sphere—that it extends well beyond the obsessive hoopla surrounding Miley Cyrus. I encourage you to help feminism “GET WET” with Jahan Yousaf, and the countless other artists that represent the movement, far better than Cyrus and her foam finger ever will.  

4 Responses to “Making Feminism “GET WET””

  1. truequeerlatte

    While I appreciate the perspective of your article, I am a little confused about what you are arguing. On one hand you arguing that it is time for women in music to be allowed for embracing their sexuality but on the other, you are trivializing Miley’s role in doing just that. While she hasn’t been outspoken about this issue in the same way Krewella has, she certainly comes to mind as someone who has been brought down by embracing exploited images of herself. I don’t think that Krewella is arguing that we should dismiss Miley, but rather that we should create space for her and others looking to reclaim their sexuality. I did enjoy this piece though! The writing was great and Krewella really gets at the issue of respectability politics and female autonomy!

    Reply
    • tohellwithsugarandspice

      Love this piece and love Krewella! I agree that women should be able to take control of their sexuality! If everyone else can exploit women, it’s about time women took the power back.

      Reply
  2. SpongebobBloggerpants

    Truequeerlatte: So glad you read my post, I really appreciate your feedback! In retrospect, I realize that my argument is somewhat unclear. I was actually not trying to discredit Cyrus in the slightest, simply wanted to point out that she is not the only plausible feminist icon out there and that there are other reputable artists that represent the movement as well. I also wanted to make the point that our media is way too focused on her, and other celebrities such as, Katy Perry and Beyoncé. While these remarkable women are making huge waves in our culture, they are not the “do all, and be all” of feminism in pop culture, nor should they have the final word. Just trying to bring other artists, such as Jahan, and CocoRosie’s Bianca Casaday (see my last post) to the forefront. Thanks again for the feedback–always awesome to hear another perspective.

    Reply
  3. SpongebobBloggerpants

    tohellwithsugarandspice: I totally agree. The idea of taking ownership of one’s sexuality is definitely a major force in feminism in this day and age. I think that it is also important that men be allowed to do the same, not just women!!

    Reply

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