Before we get too outraged over Nicki Minaj’s guest stint on SNL, let’s shift our focus to the portrayal of black women on reality TV. Before we get too outraged over Nicki Minaj’s guest stint on SNL, let’s shift our focus to the portrayal of black women on reality TV. Last weekend’s Saturday Night Live “Bride of Blackenstein” skit, featuring rapper Nicki Minaj, caught my attention well before criticism surfaced. In the skit, Minaj embodies almost every stereotype of a black woman. As a black woman, I usually cringe when we are portrayed as the loud, sassy, unsophisticated, immature, oversexed, ignorant girl next door.
Think Halle Berry in B*A*P*S. I say “girl next door” because this image continues to be the go-to black female character for many television and film producers. So was I outraged when I saw the Nicki Minaj skit? Not really. While much of the writing was a bit insulting to me, I get that that’s typical Saturday Night Live. And as a regular viewer of the show, I would be lying if I didn’t admit that I’ve laughed when they have insulted or made fun of black people … including Oprah Winfrey, former New York Gov. David Paterson and Tyler Perry.
Now, I do think that there are times when skit comedy, situation comedy and stand-up comedians go too far. But I don’t believe this was the case with the Blackenstein skit. In fact, I don’t think it was any more insulting than the Bunifa Jackson skits on In Living Color back in the day, or, more recently, skits like the “Make You Wait Hair Salon” on the Chris Rock Show. Is it only OK when the insults are black on black? Honestly, the outrage over this Minaj skit might be more effective if it were targeted at reality shows such as Bravo’s The Real Housewives of Atlanta or VH1’s Basketball Wives.
These overwhelmingly popular shows are far more damaging to the image of black women than a five-minute skit on SNL. Thanks to the talents of professionals like TV producer Shonda Rhimes and director Sanaa Hamri, there is more balance in how black women and men are portrayed. But the fact that no black people were nominated in major categories for the Oscars or SAG Awards — and Halle Berry and Idris Elba were the only blacks nominated for this year’s Golden Globes — reveals that we still have a long way to go.
Part of the solution could be throwing support behind projects that give black characters more depth, like Berry’s latest movie, Frankie and Alice, or the canceled Undercovers on NBC, which wasn’t the greatest production but represented a bold move by the network to feature two black lead actors. If we supported these efforts the way we support everything Tyler Perry does, we could make an incredible difference in improving how black people are represented in media across the board. http://blogs. cofc. du/thelilitheffect/2011/04/20/why-are-female-rappers-represented-in-the-wrong-way/ Why are Female Rappers Represented in the Wrong Way? Posted on April 20, 2011 by dkhoover So as we all known hip-hop music has been predominantly dominated by males since the start of it existence. However female rappers are emerging on the scene with booming record sales that are pushing them further and further to the top. Now I am going to discuss how female rap artists are portrayed in our media and why they are portrayed so poorly.
Ok so I realize that it isn’t the best idea for Nicki Minaj or Lil Kim to get up on stage with every part of their body exposed but what else do you expect so that they can achieve some attention. Since hip-hop music is dominated by males females have to do whatever they can so that they stand out next to them. Anyways, I can go into greater detail about that in a little bit. To get somewhat historical about females in hip-hop I took a look at my book for my Evolution of Hip-hop class. In this I found many interesting things about females in hip-hop.
Hip-hop is greatly associated with urban male culture. In the book “That’s The Joint” Pearlman says that “females were always into rap, they had their little crews and were known for rocking parties, schoolyards, whatever it was; and females rocked just as hard as males [but] the male was just the first to be put on wax [record]. ” Although this is female artist from the eighties broke on to the scene. Artist like MC Lyte, Queen Latifah, Roxanne Shante and Monie Love were some of the first females to follow in the limelight to other male rappers.
These female rappers were delivering powerful messages that they wanted people to hear. Film Critic scholar Jacqueline Bobo says that the female rappers “working together the women utilize representations of black women that they deem valuable in productive and politically useful ways. ” These rappers just want their voices heard so that they can express some opinion. Now to talk about so of the first female rappers I turn to rapper MC Lyte. Rapper MC Lyte separated female rappers into three different categories: They were always known as “Crews” reigning in three different periods: 1.
Early 1980’s-Sha Rock, Sequence, MC Lyte 2. Mid 1980’s-Salt N Pepa, Roxanne Shante, Real Roxanne 3. Late 1990’s-Da Brat, Lil Kim, Foxy Brown During the early 1980’s ;amp; 1990’s Roxane Shante’s groundbreaking raps, and Queen Latifahs adorned strong Black Women persona was empowering while the late nineties and now we have the “Sexy MC” such as Lil Kim, Eve, ;amp; Nicki Minaj. Rappers like Queen Latifiah and MC Lyte made space for black women to vocalize their independence, sexual agency, ;amp; lyrical mastery. Although this is, I wanted to make a point that our book from this class brings out.
In our book they discuss how women in rap do not discuss being pregnant or motherhood however they discuss promiscuity. I feel that these women have to do this to stand out next to the male rappers. For example this is a Nicki Minaj lyric I wanted to share. This is from a song called “Roman’s Revenge. ” “I’m a bad bitch, I’m a cunt. And I’ll kick that hoe, punt. Forced trauma, blunt. You play the back, bitch, I’m in the front. ” So as we can see that the female MC’s today have to show aggression and attitude to succeed. Now I want to discuss female rappers ;amp; labels.
In the beginning they were called “Black Divas” but later referred to as “Queen Mother” after a female rapper said “diva denotes a posture of arrogance and pretentiousness as opposed to that of a regal ;amp; self-assured women. ” Later these rappers were broken down in to four distinctive categories. “Queen Mother”,“Fly Girl”,“Sista with Attitude” and “Lesbian” “Queen Mother” is the category that comprises female rappers who view themselves as African centered icons. They want to be viewed as “Intelligent Black Women” or “Sistas droppin’ science to the people. “Fly Girl” describes someone in chic clothing ;amp; fashionable hairstyles, jewelry ;amp; cosmetics. They also wear short skirts, sequined fabric, high heeled shoes, and prominent makeup. “Sista with Attitude” according to African American Scholar Genenva Smitherman “’tude, a diminutive form of attitude, can be defined as an aggressive, arrogant, defiant, I-know-I’m-BAD pose or air about onself. ” “Lesbian” and the lesbian category actually didn’t emerge until the late 1990’s. Since hip-hop music is deemed to be homophobic, recognition of gay/lesbian culture is not shown.
However some female rappers have broken through this barrier. Female rapper Queen Pen released her debut LP “My Melody” with her hit song “Girlfriend. ” This was seen as a “breakthrough for queer culture. ” The song “Girlfriend” plays on a black lesbian love interest. Euka Omosupe notes that “lesbian identity similar to feminism, represents white lesbian culture or white women to the exclusion of color. ” Also just wanted to add in this quote I found from Rhonda Baraka’s book “Gettin’ Back to the Basics”.
Male Hip-hop artist Rah Digga says “I think there’s always gonna be a higher ratio of male as opposed to female MC’s, but I think that female’s are definitely commanding more respect now than in the past. ” In conclusion women are achieving major strides in rap music by continuing to break through stereotypes in this male dominated tradition by redefining women’s culture and identity from a Black feminist perspective. Female rappers use their performances as platforms to refute, deconstruct, and reconstruct alternative versions of their identity.
So more power to female rap artists. http://www. digitalspy. co. uk/ustv/s91/american-idol/news/a410783/nicki-minaj-mariah-carey-feud-played-down-by-american-idol-bosses. html Nicki Minaj, Mariah Carey feud played down by ‘American Idol’ bosses Nicki Minaj and Mariah Carey’s recent spat on the set of American Idol has been played down by executives of the show. ‘Starships’ singer Minaj was reported to have launched a furious tirade against Carey during a taping of the show, which leaked onto the internet last week.
However, producers of the show have now insisted that the argument between Minaj and Carey was an isolated incident, and that the new judging panel works well. In an official statement, producers said: “This is one of the best, most passionate, dynamic and invested judging panels we’ve ever had. We love and support all of the judges and the fantastic work they are doing, and we can’t imagine a better group to find the next American Idol. “Despite all the accusations and media speculation – much of which is inaccurate – production is going extremely well today and the judges are ocused on finding the best talent here in Baton Rouge (Louisiana). ” Minaj is apparently angry with Idol bosses over the altercation, holding them responsible for Carey’s alleged rude behaviour. Subscribe to comments Post Comment Edit your comment Cancel http://www. slideshare. net/LarelleShay/nicki-minaj-analysis More…Nicki Minaj Analysis — Presentation Transcript 1. ‘Super bass’ is one of Nicki Minaj’s songs, off of her Pink Friday album that was released on 5th April 2011.
The song is categorised as a mix between electronic and pop (whilst having a hip hop beat) and contains many conventions of this genre –in regards to the music video. There are various systems of signs in the video that create meaning which consists of technical and symbolic codes. In this particular media text, numerous camera movements, shots and editing are used to tell the story. 2. The music video begins with a closeup shot of Nicki Minaj’s face whichimmediately introduces theaudience to the main person withinthe video.
The extreme close up nextallows you to move your focus on toher eyes (which is full of makeup) asthey open and blink and move indifferent directions. As it goes fromleft to right you are shown thedripping ice sculpture in thebackground that has been carvedinto the shape of a motorbike beforeher beginning to sing. 3. As she begins to sing, there is a range of slow movementfrom one prop to another to relate to what she is singingabout. This consists of wide shots and close up shots of a bubblegum pink ferrari, aeroplane, champagne bottleand glasses as well as money (stacking up) and men.
The bubblegum pink props relates to the idea of her being like a Barbie, which many of the females may take interest in. On the other hand, the close up shots of themen’s abs, face and lips (extreme close up shot) is shown in such a way to attract women to the sexual idea that she is making. Overall, these introductory shots give you an idea of the perfect life that most girls desire to have. [The way in which she interacts with one of the males also creates this type of idea of hot muscular males being a woman’s main focus – especially hers. ] 4.
In order to appeal to the men, there are anumber of group shots of Nicki Minaj and 5other females wearing denim shorts, whitevest tops and different coloured Dr. Marten boots which looks very attractive. They are all shown performing achoreographed dance and gyrating whilstlooking exactly the same as Nicki Minaj. 5. On the 3rd setting, Nicki Minaj is shown in a bathing suit,surrounded by men, with green hair (like a mermaid) andheels. Immediately, she is the centre of attention as she slowlywalks around the frozen pool and plays in it with one of themales.
The editing used within this scene is slow pacedcompared to the music that is upbeat which makes theaudience focus on everything that is taking place. Forexample, close up shots of Nicki Minaj’s legs, face and bodyare used to create intimacy with the viewer – in particular themale. In this scene, she is portrayed as being powerful anddominant especially when she throws drink over the man andsays ‘I am Nicki Minaj, I mack them dudes up’ (*mack – putthem in line) in an abrupt way to emphasise her importance –verbal code. 6. Again, she is the main focus at the chorus andis shown on the ice sculpture of a bike.
Thebackdrop is white and there is flashing lightson Nicki Minaj who stands out in a skin-tightpink and white body suit. The idea of intimacyis emphasised more through wide and lowangle shots of her dancing on the bike andhaving constant eye contact with thecamera to portray her as this sexual attractiveperson. 7. In the last scene, the editing used which is black lights to set theglowing tone of the people is really effective as it allows thebackup dancers and Nicki Minaj to stand out in their seductiveclothing from the black background.
The relationship betweeneach male and female is very sexual and taunting, for examplewhen the woman takes hold of the men’s head and circulates it. Bydoing this, we see a manipulative side to the girls which could be areason as to why the background is dark as it creates a negativeatmosphere. Much like the scene where she is on the ice sculpture bike, heractions in the last scene reflects her confidence of being a strongcontrolling woman who is of eye candy to males and has the abilityto get whatever she wants.