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Iggy vs. Eminem: A Wider Issue?

Iggy Azalea and Eminem are two of the biggest names in hip hop and mainstream music right now, so it’s no surprise that their recent feud has been brought to many people’s attention. I’m not even sure if this can even be called a ‘feud’ per say, especially considering Iggy recently appeared at the American Music Awards appearing to have forgotten all about it, as she included Eminem in her acceptance speech for Best Hip Hop, saying she was proud to win in a category with such talented nominees.

Iggy accepting her award

The Australian rapper definitely hit the nail on the head in her twitter response to Eminem’s pretty disgusting lyrics (“So swallow my pride you’re lucky just to follow my ride. If I let you run alongside the Humvee. Unless you’re Nicki, grab you by the wrist, let’s ski. So what’s it gon’ be? Put that shit away, Iggy. You don’t wanna blow that rape whistle on me. Scream! I love it”) when she discussed it in terms of men in music getting away with making such violent threats:

She’s totally right when she says women have to deal with so much harassment in the music industry, and this certainly isn’t the first time it’s come from Eminem.

Not long ago he was involved in a promotional video for Shady Records in which he expresses wanting to punch Lana Del Ray in the face:  “Play nice? Bitch I’ll punch Lana Del Rey right in the face twice, like Ray Rice in broad daylight in the plain sight of the elevator surveillance, ’Til her head is banging on the railing, then celebrate with the Ravens.”

These are obviously shocking lyrics, but is anyone really surprised by Eminem’s misogynistic behaviour anymore? He’s been rapping about beating up women for over a decade now, and he’s still a massively successful artist. Doesn’t this say more about us as consumers and our society, that we accept these sexist and violent slurs and allow him to remain on his throne at the top of his game? There’s a little bit of controversy, someone calls him out, and then everything goes back to normal. We’re so used to it from hip hop in particular, it’s as if it just gets brushed under the rug and ignored.

It seems the 42 year old rapper, known as one of the greatest lyricists in hip hop, uses these female celebrities to gain publicity, and it works. Back in the early 2000s his victims were the likes of Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera when they were the most talked about female artists of today, compared with Kim Kardashian, Lana and Iggy in 2014.

Whilst it appears he may be attempting to apologise to Iggy in new video for song ‘Guts Over Fear’ (featuring vocals from female artist Sia) with the lyrics “the pain spawns all the anger on, but it wasn’t until I put the pain in song, learned who to aim it on, that I made a spark” and “It just breaks my heart to look at all the pain I caused”, I’m just not buying it. We need to stop just accepting this kind of language in popular culture if we’re ever going to move forward.







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Edited by Amelia Bauer-Madden

Current third year English and History student, with a love of music, and lots of opinions. 
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