Anthems of Feminism

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Feminism is a universally admired trait. Women and men have sung its praise various forms, in various cultures and in various moods. I write about it, Madhur Bhandarkar makes movies about it, Ekta Kapoor makes TV series about it and Aretha Franklin sings about it. It has been present since the inception of man, and due to the constant spread of feminism, it has been evolving. It has evolved from the days when James Brown sang about ‘It’s a man man man’s world’ to now where a Pink can openly sing about the non-necessity of a man in her life in the song ‘So what’. The days where only a few divas ruled the charts has been replaced by music which is largely women dominated. Songs have been great motivators in the spread of feminism among the masses. Some songs have become the token for feminism for women all over the world.

 

Aretha Franklin Google Images

 

Respect by Aretha Franklin

 

What you want
Baby, I got
What you need
Do you know I’ve got it
All I’m askin’
Is for a little respect when you come home (just a little bit)
Hey baby (just a little bit) when you get home
(Just a little bit) mister (just a little bit)

I ain’t gonna do you wrong, while you’re gone
Ain’t gonna do you wrong (ooh) ’cause I don’t want to (ooh)
All I’m askin’ (ooh)
Is for a little respect when you come home (just a little bit)
Baby (just a little bit), when you get home (just a little bit)
Yeah (just a little bit)

I’m about to give you all of my money
And all I’m askin’ in return, honey
Is to give me my profits
When you get home (just a, just a, just a, just a)
Yeah baby (just a, just a, just a, just a)
When you get home (just a little bit)
Yeah (just a little bit)

Ooh, your kisses
Sweeter than honey
And guess what
So is my money
All I want you to do for me
Is give it to me when you get home
Yeah baby
Whip it to me
When you get home, now

R-E-S-P-E-C-T
Find out what it means to me
R-E-S-P-E-C-T
Take care, TCB

Oh
A little respect
Whoa, babe
A little respect
I get tired
Keep on tryin’
You’re runnin’ out of fools
And I ain’t lyin’
Respect
When you come home
Or you might walk in (respect, just a little bit)
And find out I’m gone (just a little bit)
I got to have (just a little bit)
A little respect (just a little bit)

 

This iconic song was initially written and recorded by Otis Reading but it became an iconic number when the queen of soul recorded it in 1967. This song is a strong statement with Franklin makes for the women’s rights and the basic respect for womankind all over the world. The lyric states the basic rant of a successful woman that a man should respect her and love her. She states that she is independent and powerful and though the love that her man gives to her is sweet, she is capable of living by herself if he does not respect her. This song instantly adds sass and power to any woman who sings it and has become a symbol of womanhood.

 

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The Greatest Love of All by Whitney Houston

 

I believe the children are our future
Teach them well and let them lead the way
Show them all the beauty they possess inside
Give them a sense of pride to make it easier
Let the children’s laughter remind us how we used to be

Everybody’s searching for a hero
People need someone to look up to
I never found anyone who fulfilled my needs
A lonely place to be
And so I learned to depend on me

I decided long ago, never to walk in anyone’s shadows
If I fail, if I succeed
At least I’ll live as I believe
No matter what they take from me
They can’t take away my dignity
Because the greatest love of all
Is happening to me
I found the greatest love of all
Inside of me
The greatest love of all
Is easy to achieve
Learning to love yourself
It is the greatest love of all

I believe the children are our future
Teach them well and let them lead the way
Show them all the beauty they possess inside
Give them a sense of pride to make it easier
Let the children’s laughter remind us how we used to be

And if, by chance, that special place
That you’ve been dreaming of
Leads you to a lonely place
Find your strength in love

 

Whitney Houston is one of the greatest singers of all time. She is the person who personifies the word ‘Diva’. Houston has many hits under her belt but perhaps the most introspective and personal of them all is The Greatest Love of All. It talks about the trust in oneself and the faith in one’s dignity. She talks about teaching the children well since they will be the society builders and nation creators. A strength in oneself and an eternal desire to succeed is what it advocates with a promise that even if you fail, you will retain your dignity and passion.

 

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Roar by Katy Perry

 

I used to bite my tongue and hold my breath
Scared to rock the boat and make a mess
So I sat quietly, agreed politely
I guess that I forgot I had a choice
I let you push me past the breaking point
I stood for nothing, so I fell for everything

You held me down, but I got up
Already brushing off the dust
You hear my voice, you hear that sound
Like thunder gonna shake the ground
You held me down, but I got up
Get ready ’cause I’ve had enough
I see it all, I see it now

I got the eye of the tiger, a fighter, dancing through the fire
‘Cause I am a champion and you’re gonna hear me roar
Louder, louder than a lion
‘Cause I am a champion and you’re gonna hear me roar
You’re gonna hear me roar

Now I’m floating like a butterfly
Stinging like a bee I earned my stripes
I went from zero, to my own hero

You held me down, but I got up
Already brushing off the dust
You hear my voice, you hear that sound
Like thunder gonna shake the ground
You held me down, but I got up
Get ready ’cause I’ve had enough
I see it all, I see it now

I got the eye of the tiger, a fighter, dancing through the fire
‘Cause I am a champion and you’re gonna hear me roar
Louder, louder than a lion
‘Cause I am a champion and you’re gonna hear me roar
You’re gonna hear me roar

I got the eye of the tiger, a fighter, dancing through the fire
‘Cause I am a champion and you’re gonna hear me roar
Louder, louder than a lion
‘Cause I am a champion and you’re gonna hear me roar
You’re gonna hear me roar
You’ll hear me roar

 

From an outsider’s perspective, it is a pop song which features Katy Perry, its singer stuck in a forest adjusting to the ways of the jungle. The glittery and literal meaning masks its much deeper message which jumps out if you read it. It is about every woman who feels that she is underestimated and suppressed by her counterpart. It is a song about liberation, about rising from the level despondency to roar and stamp her opinion on the world. Roar is a very lyrically strong song.

 

frozen__let_it_go_by_tasukiakana-d6xf0gm

 

Let It Go by Idina Menzel

 

The snow glows white on the mountain tonight
Not a footprint to be seen.
A kingdom of isolation,
and it looks like I’m the Queen
The wind is howling like this swirling storm inside
Couldn’t keep it in;
Heaven knows I’ve tried

Don’t let them in,
don’t let them see
Be the good girl you always have to be
Conceal, don’t feel,
don’t let them know
Well now they know

Let it go, let it go
Can’t hold it back anymore

Let it go, let it go
Turn away and slam the door
I don’t care
what they’re going to say
Let the storm rage on.
The cold never bothered me anyway

It’s funny how some distance
Makes everything seem small
And the fears that once controlled me
Can’t get to me at all

It’s time to see what I can do
To test the limits and break through
No right, no wrong, no rules for me,
I’m free!

Let it go, let it go
I am one with the wind and sky
Let it go, let it go
You’ll never see me cry
Here I stand
And here I’ll stay
Let the storm rage on

My power flurries through the air into the ground
My soul is spiraling in frozen fractals all around
And one thought crystallizes like an icy blast
I’m never going back, the past is in the past

Let it go, let it go
And I’ll rise like the break of dawn
Let it go, let it go
That perfect girl is gone
Here I stand
In the light of day
Let the storm rage on

The cold never bothered me anyway! This Oscar winning from the movie Frozen is very literal. The song very properly describes the situation of Princess Elsa who is forced to live under confinement because she is scared of her own power. The metaphorical meaning of this song is that girls often subdue themselves because they aren’t sure of their abilities. This inspirational number encourages women all over the world to let go of their inhibitions and fly.

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