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A Thread of Influential Female Artists: Halsey

Ashley Frangipane, or more popularly known as Halsey, is an American singer and songwriter who honestly kicked ass in the music world and gained attention from music she self-released on numerous social media platforms. Halsey sets herself apart from a lot of artists in general because she’s open with not only her fans but with herself. There’s no façade to who Halsey really is. She’s open about being biracial, bipolar and bisexual and has no fear of breaking social boundaries. These factors have made appearances and influenced the visual aspects of some of her songs such as No Control, New Americana and Ghost. The first music video to her song Ghost was released in October of 2014 and pictured a heterosexual relationship. However, in June 2015, about eight months after the first music video was released, she released another music video to Ghost and this visualized the innocence behind a homosexual relationship between her and another female. I included the word innocent because during an interview with Fuse she mentioned, “I wanted to see some representation of a lesbian relationship that wasn’t over sexualized. Just two people in love—or at least they use to be.”

            Halsey is also an influential feminist and has been creating a voice for intersectional feminism. In 2015 she tweeted, “We need a feminism that is not negligent of women of color, trans women, queer women. We need a feminism that protects ALL women. Globally”. Her fight for all women doesn’t stop there. At the 2018 Women’s March in New York City Halsey delivered a poem called “A Story Like Mine” where she touched on female inequality, sexual assault and personal stories with her experiences of being sexually assaulted throughout her childhood. If you’re not familiar with this speech, I highly encourage you to exit out of this article and watch it on YouTube (but please come back because I have more to say about his powerful women). A line from the poem which is definitely one to keep in mind, “We are not free until all of us are free”. In her poem she also recalled the 2015 Chicago show in which she performed an entire concert sponsored by Vevo while having a miscarriage because her male managers simply refused to cancel the show because of the amount of publicity and impressions the show would receive. She described the show as “The angriest performance that I’ve ever done in my life”. She was only 20 years old. She felt as if she wasn’t being treated like a human being but instead a robot. From this performance, she mentioned in her 2018 Blossom Ball speech (also highly recommend watching that on as well) that she could overcome anything and there was nothing that was going to get in her way of pursuing her goals.

             She later learned that the miscarriage and her painful periods were caused by Endometriosis, which is painful disorder where the tissue that is very similar to the tissue that is supposed to line your uterus grows on the outside of your uterus. Through this new diagnosis, instead of keeping it to herself, she spoke about not only the diagnosis but the fear she was feeling. She encouraged her fans to speak with their physicians about any concerns about their menstrual cycles. She then received numerous responses from fans sharing their Endometriosis stories or thanking her for bringing awareness to it. She also went a step further and donated to a handful of Gofundme pages to help cover numerous surgeries and treatments for people struggling with Endometriosis.  

            Halsey has used her platform for nothing but good and she’s been a voice and represented so many women whose voices and stories have not been heard. She truly dedicated herself to fight and stand up for all women since the beginning of her career and has continued to do so ever since.

 

 

Hi! My names Maddy and I'm a junior majoring in communication studies and minoring in gender and women studies as well as art. Feminism and environmentalism are very important to me and some other things I enjoy are coffee, photography, plants and concerts.
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