Bessie and the Musical Legacy of Black Feminism

From the written page to the streets, and even to cable TV, Black feminism is hitting its stride. Not only is a Black feminist theorist like Kimberlé Crenshaw changing the political landscape—first with her policy brief, “Black Girls Matter,” and her article of the same name in Ms.‘ current issue, and later with her co-authored brief, […]

Future of Feminism: Hip Hop Critiques Gender

Hip hop and rap have long been derided as anti-woman, especially with the well-known lyrical inclusion of “bitches and hoes.” Still, some have found ways to recuperate even the most virulent songs; hip hop culture and its relationship to feminism is nothing if not complicated. Since the late ’80s and early ’90s, artists such as […]

A Single Lady Watches “Single Ladies”

For the past few years, single women of all races, shapes and sizes have pumped their fists in the air, lip-synced, writhed their hips and/or done the ring-finger-hand-flip dance to Beyonce’s “Single Ladies,” an anthem for unattached women who know what they want and when they want it. But on Monday night as I, a […]

We Know Women Rock–Tell Us Something New

The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum has a reputation for being a boys club. Since 1986, when its first annual list of inductees consisted of men only, women have been snubbed three additional times (1992, 2003, 2004). But now that the Cleveland museum has a new exhibit, “Women Who Rock: Vision, Passion, […]

Can’t Stop the Women of Hip-Hop

My awakening to Black feminist thought came in 1989 when Queen Latifah, with British rapper Monie Love, rapped about “Ladies First” and opened the music video for this powerful track with a pantheon of fierce Black feminist icons: Harriet Tubman, Angela Davis, Frances E. W. Harper. Coincidentally, in the realm of the academy, Patricia Hill Collins […]

Blog Roundup: Editors’ Picks, August 9-13

As you get ready to return to the grind, make sure you’re caught up on what you might have missed this past week. Ms. rounds up the best feminist reads on the web, from West Point’s lesbian subculture to a trans storyline featured on Degrassi to Queen Latifah’s bedroom. Plus: (possibly) the most sexist baseball […]