Week 13: Women of Color and the Racialized Human Body in Popular Media

beyonce-booty1

“Other than hairstyle, the hip hop booty defines classed femininity in music videos featuring Beyonce´. While colonial discourses suggest that all Black women are promiscuous, the hip hop booty has been reassigned to working class Black women
specifically. Rap modifiers about the booty as junk, ghetto, bubble, big, or bootylicious not
only assess its physicality, but also its value and the spatial location for women who possess
that body type (read: ghetto). To call attention to a sexual sign already imbued with racist
discourses of hypersexuality is, in the words of Destiny’s Child, classless” (Durham, 2011. Pg. 41)


I chose this picture because other than hair, black women are often defined by their butt. The larger the butt the better. These ideas though have racist undertones as a large butt is often attributed to licentiousness which is not seen as something someone with class would do. These ideas often go hand in hand with hyper sexualization of large butts. Even though large butts are not seen as classy, in the hip hop world the bigger the butt you have the more value you have as a woman.

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