Firefly Pointer Fiberglass Jacket: The Punk Singer: The importance of music with a feminist message

Sunday, February 7, 2016

The Punk Singer: The importance of music with a feminist message

The Punk Singer: The importance of music with a feminist message

 Growing up in a conservative area, I was lead to believe that Feminism meant "hating men" and "privilege over equal rights". I came to learn after moving away and growing up that many things in life aren't "black and white" as I was taught. Feminism is another one of those things. I was taught to hate it by other people who didn't understand it. And when you're a kid you feel pressure to fall in line. I couldn't have been more wrong about what feminism was and means. In retrospect I find it kinda funny and sad that were taught to hate and fear things we don't understand. 

 "The Punk Singer" chronicles Kathleen Hanna's life, creativity and expressing it until she formed "Bikini Kill." However, this movie is about way more than just Kathleen Hanna and Bikini Kill. This movie illustrates the importance feminism, particularly in music. A lot of men may not realize it, but everything is a man's world. Rock music and punk music have largely been dominated by guys. Women hear things like "You can't do this because your a girl." And Kathleen creating a punk band was no exception.


All girls to the front

 In many instances girls are pushed or kept in the back. Punk shows offer a great literal illustration of this. The room fills with people, the guys push forward and mosh overly brutally once the music hits. Simultaneously girls are pushed to the edges and sides, cornered and more vulnerable to assault. I hate to admit I have experienced a LOT of this. This sort of pattern repeats a lot in our culture. Women are often times not taken seriously and feel pushed aside. And sometimes the thing to do is use your words with music. This is exactly what Kathleen Hanna did. Despite what I grew up thinking it was, feminism is a pretty simple concept. Equality, human respect, and the right to not live in fear. Rape and assault are not acceptable. This theme echoed through her music and lyrics. 

  I had no idea about the depth of creativity and activism Kathleen Hanna took part in. I'm still just scratching the surface of her music and art. Her DIY ethic and courage to confront real topics makes her one hell of a female role model. 

"The Punk Singer" is available to watch on Netflix!

P.S. Bikini Kill Tells Us Why They’re Back 

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