Wednesday, 8 July 2015


I haven't seen it, of course, but I reserve my right to express my opinions categorically before seeing it.

But as there aren't enough things for us to worry about in the world, we might as well take a few minutes to get upset about a pop video.

Is it:

a) an artistic statement with a strong feminist pedigree challenging conventional notions of acceptable female behaviour and allowing a woman to defy patriarchal stereotypes and resists the sexualised objectification of her body according to those paradigms and thus act as a nexus for resistance to misogynistic repressive gender prejudices, effectively decolonising her body in an act of reclamation of both her sexual and racial integrity from a racist and sexist patriarchy?

b) a negative example of the issues around intersectional oppressions, where Rihanna's racial identitiy as a coloured person visiting violence on a white person breaches the notion of solidarity with another female, posing questions as to the viability of a feminist movement in a society where class and race are still significant barriers to advancement, possibly more so than sex is?

c) a cunning appropriation of and satire on the misogyny and violence typical of mainstream media, in which male-on-male violence is the stock in trade, raising questions about the viewer response by confronting the audience with the hypocrisy of a situation where male-on-male violence is celebrated, but female-on-female violence and criminality is deemed troubling and somehow wrong?

d) Mostly just a bit of attention seeking by a third rate celebrity who - like most other pop stars - will do pretty much anything to claw even more money into her already bloated coffers. Rihanna's videos are not advancing any message, merely Rihanna's bank account. Controversy sells, so she is controversial. She's Fox News and the Daily Mail.

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