Wednesday, October 16, 2013


The headline for Kate Nash's interview with Drowned In Sound unsurprisingly draws attention to her prediction that "there’ll be a music video soon, and the shocking thing will be sex with a goat", but rather more alarming is her claim that the Spice Girls are "the reason I love music and feminism".

Interviewer Derek Robertson does venture that they were part of the lineage of manufactured pop of which One Direction are a part, but never really challenges the preposterous suggestion that Girl Power could be equated with feminism. There was no real feminist message in the songs themselves (indeed, '2 Become 1', for instance, could be read as endorsing the opposite view in hackneyed style - the surrender of individual identity within a relationship, rather than its expression), and Geri Halliwell famously claimed that Maggie Thatcher "was the first Spice Girl, the pioneer of our ideology" - yet Thatcher despised feminists and feminism.

Perhaps, though, we should cut Nash (and Robertson) some slack. After all, to the 11-year-old Nash, ignorant of both the idiocy of Halliwell's statement and the machinations of male puppet-masters behind the scenes, the Spice Girls' superficial sloganeering may have genuinely seemed like feminism. That said, it would be nice to know she acknowledges that fact now.

The interview's preamble led me to this article on the Guardian blog in which Lauren Mayberry of Chvrches writes about the sexist and misogynistic online abuse she has to endure on a daily basis. While the fuckwits who feel it's acceptable to hide behind a pseudonym and fire off obscene messages are the worst, those who claim that women like Mayberry put themselves in a position to be shot at and should grow a thicker skin are hardly much better. As she says, objectification shouldn't have to be simply accepted as a fact of life.

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