Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Ke$ha, Ke$ha, Ke$ha

Ever since it's release a couple of weeks ago, I have been obsessed with Ke$ha's new album, Animal. My roommate knows better than anyone how I have been playing it on repeat morning, noon, and night. This party girl's semi-offensive music has recently exploded on the charts and has managed to either get people dancing or piss them off.

I am slightly ashamed to admit that I am guilty of being ignorant of the lyrics because my judgment is clouded by the catchy-ness of it. After a couple of run-throughs of the album, the feminist in me starts pointing out all of the things wrong with her lyrics. Part of the appeal of Ke$ha's music is that she is bold enough to write songs some of these songs without worrying about who she's offending. It is the shock and awe mentality. This audacity can sometimes be a good thing, but a lot of the time it can be shocking in a bad way.

Blah Blah Blah is one of her songs in particular that I've been trying to decide whether it is okay or not. I had kind of lost steam in on my inter-cranial debate until I saw Feministing, The Sexist, and bitchmedia's commentary on the song.

Ke$ha is basically telling a guy to stop talking and just have sex with her:

"Don’t be a little bitch with your chit chat
Just show me where your dick’s at.

...Meet me in the back with the Jack and the jukebox
So cut to the chase kid
Cuz I know you don’t care what my middle name is
I wanna be naked but you’re wasted.
A surprising switch in gender roles. Most of the time we assume that guys want to avoid the talking and get down the business but Ke$ha is turning the tables. It is good to see females breaking out of the docile, prude mold and showing they can be openly sexual. Ke$ha's music gives females a role model who shows them it is okay to be loud and say whatever outrageous things they want to say. Now is Ke$ha a good influence for young girls who are listening to her lyrics about drinking, partying, and having casual sex? Probably not, but that's a whole other debate.

While she is showing the public that women can break the stereotype, she hints at non consensual sexual activity, which is not something we want males or females doing. A lot of people will make the argument that she is not being serious and she is not actually an advocate of date-rape, but why is it okay that she's joking about it? Date-rape affects both males and females in a very non-humorous way so why is it funny to make a joke out of their experiences?

If a man wrote a song with the same lyrics, feminists would pounce on him in an instant, but because Ke$ha is a female does that make it okay?

Thoughts on whether or not Ke$ha's song is acceptable or not?
Comment or email me at mkirschen@feminist.org

photo courtesy of Edo Peltier via Flickr

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