7116 Consent + Pop Music

Blurred Lines was an issue, I think we can all agree, especially considering how godsdamned catchy it was. I detested the implications of the lyrics (and video) obviously; some guy telling you that he knows you want him really, even the title suggesting the whole ‘no means yes’ weird logic, that kind of thing. It really has been talked about a lot.

Uptown Funk. I have a problem with Uptown Funk. I don’t disagree that it’s better than Blurred Lines, and social media etc basically did the marketing for that song; the song of the summer and it’s not like Blurred Lines. It’s better than it, fine. It still has questionable implications; not as obvious as BL, I don’t think anyone would dare go that explicit again with the same kind of message. But it is threatening, and it is objectifying, especially when the video is taken alongside it.

  1. Funk; I know it’s about the music itself, but it close to fuck – not that I have a problem with expletives, the problem comes when it’s combination with the rest of the lyrics.
  2. ‘Uptown Funk gonna give it to ya’; Maybe this is me over analysing but the change in rhythm with these lines, the repetition, the vids mcu’s of the group of males praising women as they walk down a street; I personally see this as threatening, there’s no request of consent or anything, hardly even pre-flirting or anything.

Yeah so, maybe you think consent is difficult thing to fit into music lyrics, maybe it isn’t necessary to be fitted in. I disagree, especially if a song is purely about a guy believing he is so hot that everyone wants to have sex with him so he’ll ‘give it to’ us. [[SEGWAY]] Madonna and Justin Timberlake, 4 Minutes. Just putting it out there, much better lyrically in terms of consent and sex presentation. Why?

It’s not just because both male and female voices are heard, that’s a stand alone bonus.

“Are you ready to go?” repeated
“If you want it, you’ve already got it […] Say the word and I’m gonna give you what you want” Still assumes the desired sexual partner wants them, i.e. there’s still room for narcissism in a song that asks for consent. “Say the word” literally there, a request for consent and patient waiting for a reply; lyrically consent done right.

It’s not perfect. Nothing ever is but, it’s not.
“Grab a boy./ Grab your girl” My problem with that should be pretty obvious.
“Don’t be a prima donna” Questionable. As the narrative appears to be about the end of the world may just mean hysterical drama queen. As the convo is about sex, implications of pushy asshole telling a woman to not be so dramatic and stop refusing to have sex with them.
“And I know I can tell that you like it and that it’s good, By the way that you move” Not exactly verbal consent, but conventionally accepted consent though of course the problem with physical consent is that it can be misinterpreted. Madonna’s reply “The road to hell is paved with good intentions” certainly doesn’t clear this up.
“But if I die tonight at least I can say I did what I wanted to do, Tell me how ’bout you?” Checking continued consent? Possibly? Which would be a good thing obv. No reply, straight into chorus; questionable.

Basically, in the war of lyric consent 4 minutes wins hands down (out of these 3 anyway).
Blurred Lines is abhorrent but just because that’s our new low, we shouldn’t let other things get off without any criticism.

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