Beyoncé’s FLAWLESS feminism: A Biography
Beyoncé Knowles was originally born in Houston, Texas in 1981. She rose to fame at only sixteen years old when her R&B group, more commonly known as Destinies Child, signed their first record deal. Since then, Beyoncé has embarked on numerous different experiences such as acting along side of Eddie Murphy and Jennifer Hudson, and most importantly the take off of her solo career in 2004. Her first solo album sold millions of copies, won her five Grammy awards and was certified platinum four times. Her second solo album, released in 2006, held two of her most famous songs, Irreplaceable and Beautiful Liar, which some would say were the songs that really created a name for her. At the 2010 Grammy awards, Beyoncé walked away with 6 Grammy’s. Since then, she has released her self-titled album, Beyoncé, without any promotion for it. Surprisingly, she still sold over 800,000 copied of this album in the first weekend that it hit shelves (Beyoncé 2015). Since the release of this album she holds 19 total career Grammy awards, putting her on the list of top 20 artists with the most Grammy awards, alongside of her husband Jay-Z (Grein 2014). Since the takeoff of her career, Beyoncé has married Jay-Z, more formally known as Shawn Carter. Jay-Z not only runs his own record label, but also is famous in his own right with twelve of his own albums reaching the top of the charts and earning him 17 Grammy awards (Grein 2014). In addition to music and acting, Beyoncé also runs a clothing line called House of Dereon, and has her own fragrance line called Heat. Not only is she involved in her own million dollar business empire, but she also makes millions by endorsing companies such as H&M and Pepsi (Beyoncé 2015). Through the rise of her fame, Beyoncé has become on of the most recognized faces in today’s society. According to Forbes, she is the number one most powerful celebrity, surpassing even celebrities such as Oprah Winfrey and Ellen DeGeneres (Pomerantz 2015). Over the past century women have earned many of the same rights that men have held. Since there are still some things that are unfair, such as the pay gap between men and women, many women have spoken of their opinions in the public eye. Beyoncé is not shy about expressing her opinion in the topic of feminism, which is the advocacy of women's rights on the grounds of political, social, and economic equality to men (Feminism 2010). She has been discussing her opinions for years, but her opinion became controversial to the public when she released a twelve-minute short documentary discussing her opinions on the matter. In a video called Yours and Mine, Beyoncé talks about what fame means to her, what her marriage means to her, and most importantly what equality of the sexes means to her. Receiving more than twelve million views, it has become one of the most influential videos in the world of feminism (Boardman 2014). Right after the release of this short film, Beyoncé performed live at the 2014 Video Music Awards with a giant backdrop that said, “FEMINISM,” which has since made Beyoncé one of the first female celebrities to express her opinions on the matter. Beyoncé is now recognized as an active feminist.
“We teach girls to shrink themselves, to make themselves smaller. We say to girls, ‘you can have ambition, but not too much. You should aim to be successful, but not too successful. Otherwise you will threaten the man.’ Because I am female, I am expected to aspire to marriage. I am expected to make my life choices always keeping in mind that marriage is the most important. Now marriage can be a source of joy and love and mutual support. But why do we teach girls to aspire to marriage and we don’t teach boys the same? We raise girls to see each other as competitors – not for jobs or for accomplishments, which I think can be a good thing, but for the attention of men. We teach girls that they cannot be sexual beings in the way...
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