Crunk Feminist Revlections on generations of female rappers
I encourage you to read crunkista’s post on Crunk Feminist Collective. It raises some important considerations/issues/questions in discussions about different generations–and competition among different generations–of female rappers.
Most interesting–and important, IMHO–is crunkista’s claim that the underlying issue here is about our general tendency to discount the artistic authority of female musicians:
That’s really the issue here.
Most of the men with whom I’ve debated this issue, and it has been primarily men who’ve made this argument, keep suggesting that both Kim and Nicki have ghostwriters, and that Kim has no talent. In other words, both of these women should just go sit down with their cutesie catfight. Can we say sexism?
So you have women suggesting that women shouldn’t fight each other, even though it is a time honored part of the art form, and men suggesting that the battle is whack off top because neither of these women is a legitimate lyricist to begin with.
And this is precisely why I think this battle is good for women in Hip Hop. It suggests that we don’t have to play nice to participate. It challenges narratives that attempt to turn Black women of a certain age into mothers against their will. It represents another instance where Kim has done what she always did best for Hip Hop—challenge the narrative scripts of Black womanhood.
I also agree that there is this tendency to want women to be “nice,” even and especially in genres like hip hop, where the dis and the feud are highly refined artistic/rhetorical strategies. Crunkista’s point also emphasizes that it’s important for us to see black women as legitimately angry–mainly b/c white supremacy and patriarchy encourage us to delegitimize and trivialize black women’s anger.