It’s pretty easy to insist that “Sexism doesn’t exist anymore!!1!” given that modern times are relatively fair towards women and men. Women can vote, own property, work high-level jobs, work at all, have fun without being accused of being a witch, etc. Yet we still face gender discrimination on a daily basis, but in new and sometimes more subtle ways.
Singer Kate Nash proved this while browsing a record store recently. Among the usual genres, like “Reggae,” she found an unusual section for “Females of All Description.” Yikes.
Her angry Tweets rightfully imply sexism at the hands of the record store, though it may not be clear why. Lumping together female artists under “Females of All Description” isolates them based on their gender. They aren’t considered just rock singers, country artists or rappers; they are female rock singers, female country artists and female rappers. Although the store probably didn’t mean any harm or blatant sexism, it is discriminatory because it separates those female musicians from everyone else.
This label also implies that every other genre (like “Reggae”) is male by comparison. The men get the entire store, but women are confined to just one section. It implies that men are the “default” and thus aren’t ever considered “male musicians” but instead just as “musicians.” Nash explained her anger on Twitter:
Nash’s Tweets only highlight a sliver of the sexism that has been dominating the music industry throughout history. It’s affected every musical genre, from classical to pop. In this upcoming December, the Metropolitan Opera will be performing its first opera by a woman since 1903. That’s literally 113 years without a female composer. There’s also a huge lack of female conductors on major classical stages.
Meanwhile, in the pop world, Kesha’s high-profile sexual assault case against Sony producer Dr. Luke was dropped because it was the only way for her to continue to pursue her passion as a musician. No one should ever have to compromise their safety and happiness in this way, but the sexism in the media prioritized Dr. Luke’s reputation over Kesha’s well-being. Not to mention the countless other examples of sexism in the music industry: sexist lyrics, the dominance men have as rappers, how female musicians are treated by paparazzi, and the list goes on.
Say it like it is, Kate Nash.
[H/T: Elite Daily]