At the presentation of the Ruth Bader Ginsburg Lifetime Achievement Award to the iconic Catharine MacKinnon, a woman asked the following question: I worry about the future generation of feminists; should they really be watching Beyoncé suggestively dancing? MacKinnon gracefully responded that feminist pop culture must evolve as the patriarchy adapts, and that’s the kind of work Beyoncé engages in. The singer’s achievements and messages of female empowerment have been vast… and mostly ignored or cast aside by academia. Until now.
Kevin Allred, a Rutgers Women and Gender Studies Ph.D, introduces what could shape up to be a groundbreaking course titled “Politicizing Beyoncé.” Through the lens of the work of black feminist activists, scholars, and creatives like bell hooks, Sojourner Truth, and Alice Walker, students will be invited to consider the star’s position in women’s history. While 20th century African American music and female singer-songwriters are often taught in college courses, Allred’s course emerges as one of the first pivoting on a black female figure. She’s a complex, stunningly human, and fascinating feminist, and her work deserves this sort of platform in scholarship.
Thanks to Policy Mic
Images via Cosmopolitan