Misogyny in Hip Hop: Dream Team!

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Michelle Tejada: Can We Defend Eminem?

Eminem is a white hip hop artist who became popular in the late 90’s. His lyrics have been known for containing very descriptive, derogatory, and disturbing words, particularly towards women and the LGBTQIA+ community which has left him with a misogynistic and homophobic image.

One song in particular, “Kill You” goes into depth about rape and abuse. He says things like “Blood, guts, guns, cuts, knives, lives, wives, nuns, sluts — bitch, I’ma kill you!,” “Shut up, slut! You’re causin’ too much chaos. Just bend over and take it like a slut — okay, Ma?” and “Slut, you think I won’t choke no whore, ‘Til the vocal cords don’t work in her throat no more?” within a matter of seconds.

https://youtu.be/bOjQC4LPBS0 0:20 – 1:08 

This type of gendered violence is a common theme in Eminem’s lyrics, however, he still remains as one of rap’s most popular artists. Clearly, his misogyny and homophobia is something that is generally accepted by his fans, otherwise they would not listen to him. But why? Even fellow artists will give him a pass. What is most surprising, is that these artists include women. Pink, a female pop artist, came out and defended his misogynistic lyrics. She said to USA Today, ““I know that some people think he’s homophobic, misogynistic and all kinds of things, but there’s a very serious side of me that’s an activist and there’s a very silly side to me… I’ve worked with Eminem a thousand times — he is not those things. He is an artist, he is a genius and he presses people’s buttons on purpose.” For whatever reason, his violent lyrics that go into deep description about killing, raping, and abusing women does not seem to phase the hip hop audience. An article in the Sarasota Harold Tribune suggested that it may be because he represents a sick part of society that no one wants to acknowledge, but he does.

Nonetheless, when it comes to Eminem, he spits lyrics that fans are listening to and either agreeing with or letting pass as if they don’t promote gendered violence, which without any doubt promotes that kind of behavior. Yet, he is still seen as a rap legend and in fact is praised by the black community for his activism. At the recent BET awards, Eminem came out with a rap that ripped Donald Trump’s racist rhetoric to shreds. Eminem openly called out the current president and stood by the side of the black people in light of the regression this country has taken with this racist administration.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LunHybOKIjU 2:03 – 3:08 

With the way that Eminem has portrayed himself politically as an artist, this is not something any of us were expecting. For the first time, he stood by an oppressed group and was outspoken about it. He even calls out his own fans at the end, telling him to pick a side – his or Trump’s. Could this have been a turnaround for Eminem? Or are his viewpoints on race and gender completely different, suggesting that his misogynistic ideologies still exist? If you look closely in his denouncing of Trump, you will notice that there are black men behind him. That’s right, black men and black men only; no women! Without a doubt, what Eminem did at the BET awards is amazing and was a huge step forward for him, but I can’t help but think maybe his support isn’t for black people as a whole, but only black men. His lyrics from the past are too graphic to ignore. Being that he is a white man in an industry revolving around black culture, can we defend Eminem in his portrayal of polar ideologies in terms of political activism?

Works Cited





Danielle Diaz: Misogynistic Lyrics and Artists

All throughout hip hop, the topic of misogyny has always been present through the use of lyrics and music videos. Male artists in particular perpetuate the negative connotation of women deserving abuse, being gold diggers, distrustful, sluts, whores, sex toys, and anything of that sort. This type of objectification of women is shown throughout many songs within hip hop and many male hip hop artists have a continuous pattern of using misogyny in their music. Eminem is the number one when it comes to having misogynistic verses in his music, his lyrics encourage rape and violence to be bestowed upon women for absolutely any reason. This is evident in Eminem’s popular song “Kill You” in which he rapes his own mother saying these lines:

Shut up slut, you’re causin’ too much chaos

Just bend over and take it like a slut, okay Ma?

“Oh, now he’s raping his own mother, abusing a whore,

Snorting coke, and we gave him the Rolling Stone cover?”

You god damn right bitch, and now it’s too late

(Eminem; Kill You)

https://youtu.be/bOjQC4LPBS0 (00:00:38)

In another one of Eminem’s songs, Guilt Conscious, he raps about a man coming home from work and walking in on his wife cheating on him using lyrics encouraging the man to kill his wife by slitting her throat for cheating on him:

Fuck that shit, you just caught this bitch cheatin’

While you at work she’s with some dude tryin’ to get off?

Fuck slittin’ her throat, cut this bitches head off!

(Eminem; Guilty Conscious)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xbw_BxDwdjk 00:02:45

These are just a few examples of Eminem’s misogynistic lyrics. Why is it important to point out lyrics such as these in hip hop music? The answer is simple: there are those who have lived through traumatic experiences like sexual assault and want to be able to use music to escape it rather than reliving it through the lyrics, younger listeners may be influenced by lyrics to mistreat women and dehumanize them, etc. Not only are Eminem’s lyrics misogynistic, some are also homophobic and target those within the LGBTQ Community. Eminem is not the only male hip hop artist that uses misogyny within their music, Kanye West, Lil Wayne, Jay Z, Bizzare, and many others. Kanye West’s well known song Gold Digger portrays women of only getting with men in order to get their money and then leaving them, Bizzare had a verse in Eminem’s song Amityville which read: 

My little sister’s birthday / She’ll remember me / For a gift I had ten of my boys take her virginity.

Which did not come as a shock to me considering he was being featured in Mr. Misogyny song.

Male hip hop artists will continues to use misogyny within their music because they know either way they will be making money off those listening to their music. Whether someone supports an artist that uses misogyny in their lyrics or is against it completely, the artist is still making a profit because individuals are still listening and viewing the songs to hear their favorite versus or to hear the latest controversial verse in hip hop.

List of Misogynistic Hip Hop Songs:

So Much Better – Eminem (pretty much any eminem song for that matter)

Gold Digger – Kanye West

Ain’t No Fun (If the homies can’t have none) – Snoop Dog

U.O.E.N.O. – Rocko ft. Rick Ross and Future

Bitches Ain’t Shit – Dr. Dre ft. Snoop Dog

One Less Bitch – N.W.A.

And the list goes on and on and on and on…

Works Cited:

The Objectification of Women and Misogyny in Hip Hop: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9EtIqVKKVWY

Misogynist Lines in Rap: https://www.elitedaily.com/music/music-news/the-20-most-misogynist-lines-in-rap-history


Rose Szalay: A Mistake Is One Thing, Assault Is Another…

Hip Hop has historically been stigmatized with perpetuating sexist ideas regarding women, and emasculating other rap artists in a continuous pissing contest. This, however, is not always the case for all hip hop artists, specifically Queen Latifah, Denise Barnes, Yo-Yo, Salt N’ Peppa, among others alike. Knowing this, we cannot deny the sexist overtones of other hip hop artists, especially in male-dominated groups. N.W.A. is just one example of a group that operated on a machismo mentality.

In the late 80’s, the group gained popularity for their album and big hit “Straight Outta Compton” after their first published album “N.W.A. and the Posse.” Ice Cube first left after their first album to study at Phoenix University, but later returned in 1989 to finish “Straight Outta Compton” (Simon and Schuster). Unfortunately, due to legality (“royalties”) issues, Ice Cube officially left N.W.A. He believed he deserved more credit for his contribution to “Straight Outta Compton.” The drama does not end there, though.

Now we must talk about Denise Barnes. An astounding and dedicated hip hop artist since the rise in the 

80’s, she put her work on Delicious Vinyl, hosted Fox’s Pump It Up! as well as held interviews on Boyz N the Hood. She also participated in collaborations with artists, including King Tee, Tone Loc, Ice-T, Dr. Dre, MC Ren, Easy-E, MC Hammer, and more, on Dr. Dre’s all-star posse cut “We’re All in the Same Gang” in 1990 (Banks). Over time, she became acquainted with members of N.W.A., including Ice Cube, during her time on Boyz N the Hood. She describes her first impressions of the group on an interview with HuffPost, using only positive characteristics and with little hesitation.

In the latter part of 1990, Barnes’ interview with Yo-Yo (on set of Boyz N the Hood) was later interrupted by Ice Cube. He did not say much, other than a vague statement regarding N.W.A., or at least it seemed that way. The producer of the show Boyz N the Hood decided to put in Ice Cube’s offhanded comment before Denise’s featured interview with N.W.A., portraying a sort of preference towards Ice Cube, in the minds of Dr. Dre, DJ Yella, Easy-E, and MC Ren.

This interview aired in October of 1990, almost a year after Ice Cube promptly left N.W.A. On January 27th, 1991, at a record release party, there was talk of Dr. Dre confronting Barnes regarding the segment (Banks). However, in her 2015 Interview with Kevin Powell, Barnes told him Dr. Dre immediately grabbed her, with no verbal engagement. She remembers being slammed against the wall multiple times, eventually being thrown into a bathroom. Some bystander finally pulled Dr. Dre off of Barnes. She still suffers from migraines, over 25 years later. She also received fanmail from her (female) fans, explaining that her beating was their first encounter with domestic violence.

At first, the remaining members of N.W.A. either denied the incident occurred, or outright admitted Barnes deserved the beating. These were (supposedly) her fellow hip hop artists and friends, as stated before. Barnes described her friendship in the HuffPost interview as one of comradary and respect. After this misunderstanding, based on the actions of producer Jeff Shore, this comradary suddenly dissolved into an assumption of deceit. The group truly believed Barnes meant to include the off-handed comment as a means to disrespect them and their reputation on national television, and Dr. Dre had decided to take action into his own hands. 

8 years later, Eminem collaborated with Dr. Dre on “Guilty Conscious” where the first of many other rap artists used the abuse of Denise Barnes for artistic inspiration or a kick in the nuts. To sell records. To profit off of the abuse of (yet another) black female icon in the hip hop community.


This, though only one example and a complicated one, is an indication of the expansive power of mandating machismo among a (seemingly) male-dominated music genre. This is a pattern found among the hip hop community, as well as other music genres such as rock, punk, and country. However, hip hop is consistently put under scrutiny for its sexism and objectification; judged unfairly in comparison to these other music genres. The fact remains that black men are stigmatized with committing/being subjected to violence, that it is “expected”, and Dr. Dre was one example of this stereotype.

(oh, because Beyonce is ALWAYS relevant! the end)

-Short Clip (~0:44) https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=94&v=B33kh2pS0Ag

Works Cited:

-HuffPost 2015 Interview with Denise Barnes (30 Minutes) (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mcaqWIMtso4 )

-Banks, Alec (https://www.highsnobiety.com/2015/08/06/dr-dre-dee-barnes/ )

-Blay, Zeba (https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/hip-hop-misogyny-double-standard_us_55cdf7b9e4b07addcb42a7b8 )

– Simon and Schuster (https://www.rollingstone.com/music/artists/n-w-a/biography )


Juliette Rankin: “The Video Girl”: Misogyny in Lyrics/Visual Media

Misogyny in the hip hop culture refers to lyrics, videos, and any other aspect of the hip hop culture that supports and normalizes the objectification, victimization, and exploitation of women; it also sets up negative stereotypes.For years, women have been degraded and exploited in music videos. In Hip hop music videos the girls are known to be called video vixens. Video vixens can viewed as a women of color or mix ancestry exposing herself and body. Rappers use females as props and sexual to assert their masculinity and to come off as “The Man” or “Playa.” The concept of these videos is for the male to be perceived as important or powerful and the woman are just good for being eye candy and are disposable. 


Blac youngsta – Booty



Busty and curvaceous women who are featured in fleets suggesting that one can easily be replaced by another. They appear as debased sexual objects on sale for male enjoyment and dressed in skimpy clothing such as lingerie or bikinis. Women are seen dancing on and for the male rapper blac youngsta that enhances the heteronormative masculinity of the artist.


Often times women are referenced only for their anatomy or sexuality. The sexual objection found in the lyrics teach that women are to be used for sex then easily discarded. Lyrics also help legitimize violence. The message in these songs teaches that violence is the correct response to women who don’t know their  “place” and who violate gender roles and that men should follow this lesson. Degradation of what men is the sole theme of some rap songs. Often referencing women as ‘Bitch’ ‘hoe’ or ‘thot’


Rick Ross- U.O.E.N.O:

“Put molly all in her champagne she ain’t even know it. I took her home and enjoyed that, she ain’t even know it.”


Lil Wayne – we be steady mobbing

“I can fuck yo girl and make her but nut for me then slut for me then kill for me then steal for me and of course it’ll be your cash. Then I’ll murder that bitch and send her body body back to your ass.”



Startin’ to think that I really hate bitches
But you know a nigga keep 8 bitches
Just give me pussy, it won’t be a problem with me
If you lookin’ for your wife, she probably with me

I am not cuffin’ these bitches, boy, I be duckin’ these bitches
I just be fuckin’ these bitches, you fall in love with these bitches
I am not cuffin’ these bitches, boy, I be duckin’ these bitches
I just be fuckin’ these bitches, you fall in love with these bitches


Men who listen to sexually violent rap lyrics are more likely to express adversarial sexual beliefs; for example, the belief that men should dominate women. Music videos depicting women in sexually subordinate roles increase female subjects’ acceptance of violence against women. Exposure to lyrics makes people more likely to perceive black man as hostile. Our opinions are shaped by the media. The music we listen to can shape our perceptions and making this seem normal to us, that with such influential people putting this out for people to hear it makes it acceptable.


Denisha Thiaw: Misogyny in Hip Hop Culture

The objectification of women in Hip hop is beyond prevalent. According to Webster’s dictionary “Misogyny is dislike of, contempt for, or ingrained prejudice against women.”  Hip Hop is one of the most notable genres there are. I believe it’s remarkable for objectifying women as sexual objects, beings, and symbols.

Video vixens were used in videos as key objects dressed in “floss” little to nothing, while dancing licentiously (promiscuously).

Lyrics that usually accompany these songs are degrading towards the female gender (body).

But men aren’t the only ones who use lyrics that are degrading towards women.

As a society we allow this profound method of expression by downloading their music, paying for their concert tickets and supporting their brands.

The oversexualization of women in hip hop videos is a modern issue that needs to be discussed. Many popular music videos portray women as sex objects and as being subordinate to men, both of which are excepted ideas in today’s society. There’s a constant stereotype shown in Hip Hop music videos, of women specifically African American  women in videos, “the video hoe/ video vixen” also known as the Falisha, Tanisha’s, Monica’s, and Monique’s.

By rapping about sex with women and perpetuating gender stereotypes, men think they are able to boost their masculinity and create fake hip hop credentials. (Just look at MTV, and Grammy Award winner rapper Ludacris.)

In his AlbumIncognegro” Released in 1999 one song that I know is very controversial is his

song “HO”.


Ho (Ho)

You’sa Ho (Ho)

You’sa Ho (Ho)

I said that you’sa ho (Ho)

You doing ho activities

With ho tendencies

Hos are your friends, hoes are your enemies

With ho energy to do what ya do

Blew what ya blew

Screw what ya screw

Y’all professional like DJ Clue, pulling on my coat tail

An why do you think you take a ho to a hotel?

Hotel everybody, even the mayor

Reach up in the sky for the ho-zone layer

Come on player once a ho always

And hos never close they open like hallways

An here’s a ho cake for you whole ho crew

An everybody wants some cause hoes gotta eat too

Cant turn a ho into a housewife

Hos don’t act right

There’s hos on a mission, an hoes on a crack-pipe

Hey ho how ya doing, where ya been?

Probably doing ho stuff cause there you ho again

Its a ho wide world, that we living in

Feline, feminine, fantastical, women

Not all, just some

You ho who you are

There’s hoes in the room, there’s hoes in the car

There’s hoes on stage, there’s hoes by the bar

Hos by near, an hos by far

Ho! (But can I get a ride?)

NO! (C’mon, nigga why?)

Cause you’sa

You gotta run in your pantyhose

Even your daddy knows

That you sucking down chocolate like daddy-o’s

You hos are horrible, horrendous

On taxes y’all writing off hos as dependents

I see the ho rising

It ain’t surprising

Its just a ho-asis

With ugly chicks faces

But hos don’t feel so sad and blue

Cause most of us niggas is hos too

You gotta run in your pantyhose

Even your daddy knows

That you sucking down chocolate like daddy-o’s

You hos are horrible, horrendous

On taxes y’all writing off hos as dependents

I see the ho rising

It ain’t surprising

Its just a ho-asis

With ugly chicks faces

But hos don’t feel so sad and blue

Cause most of us niggas is hos too

Motherfuckers I’m so tired of y’all niggas always talking

Bout hos this, hos that, you the motherfucking ho nigga

I wasn’t no ho last night

Ho, bring yo ass!

OK, hold on



Ludacris isn’t the only rapper  who degrades women in his videos and raps, Kanye does it all the time! on his Album Late Registration Released in 2005 he released a song called “gold digger”  with Jamie Foxx

As I read in a study by Denise Herd,”Conflicting Paradigms on Gender and Sexuality in Rap Music, A Systematic Review” black women are also molested by being portrayed in a degrading manner. These stereotype images are used to justify blacks oppression, normalise racism,sexism, poverty and other forms of social inequality. The objectification theory states that women primary values comes from their bodies and their physical appearance. Hip Hop features more  exposed skin and submissive position than women than any other style of music.


Over time a lot has changed over music videos like the audience and topics like sex, money and drugs but women being portrayed as sex objects has been prevalent for years. So when will it stop ?

Although men in the hip-hop industry are known for objectifying women, I have to play devil’s advocate and say a few women are likely to expose sexual behavior like men too. In my opinion there’s nothing wrong with women using their bodies to empower themselves. This sometimes can be misconstrued by men who think “she’s being for the vitamin D”. The minute women’s bodies start to get exposed by men that is a problem. We should be able to have control of our bodies.

Oversexualization of different genders, like country, is prevalent and praised but there’s a stigma because Cardi B was a stripper ? But that doesn’t mean you should disrespect her.

She reclaiming, not degrading, her body! !

(here are more examples of self-empowered women)

Hit List (empowering or nah?)

JAY-Z – Big Pimpin’ ft. UGK

Fatty Girl- Ludacris, LL Cool J, Keith Murray

50 Cent – Candy Shop ft. Olivia

Kanye West – The New Workout Plan

E-40 – You And That Booty

Lloyd – Get It Shawty

Nelly, St. Lunatics – Batter Up

Nelly – Hot In Herre

Busta Rhymes – What It Is (Clean Version) ft. Kelis P. Diddy – “Shake Ya Tailfeather” (feat. Nelly & Murphy Lee)

Ludacris – Ho

Gold Digger – Kanye

Nelly – tip drill

Jay Z ft Nelly- Sysco