mercredi, octobre 18, 2006

There, there...

Moya e-mailed me this article, which I saw a few days later on MAN's blog and I have not not made it more than a few lines into the first paragraph for two reasons. I'm disinterested in "when did you fall out of love with hip hop narratives" and I'm disturbed by how consistently readings of women's behavior are understood through love-romantic, maternal or familial. How many times will we read an article about a woman's change in musical taste through the metaphor of a deteriorating love affair? First encountered (by me*) in Joan Morgan's writing it was original if troubling but now it's just cliché. Maybe there is something good in this piece. I don't know and I don't care to find out unless pieces like this are framed in some more original thinking. And I suspect one of the many reasons folk invoke this tired metaphor is out of some insidious essentialist thinking about women and love, which certainly extends beyond the hip hop landscape. One thing I was trying to get at in my preliminary research on Rock "groupies" a few years back is that its not about the love or lust or earnestness (think Crowe's "Band Aids") or depravity or debauchery or drugs or even low self-esteem (maybe its a little of those things) but power and agency and access and strategy. There is an undeniable logic to the "groupie's" behavior. The "groupie" swoon is a complicated movement. I think we are too simplistic when we think about women's behavior, especially female fans, in conversations about music. And I think these simple formulations have become institutionalized. I am into metaphysics and spirit and all that warm "we are the world" shit but I hate sentimentality. That's why Brown Sugar was so annoying. Don't get me wrong it was a warm movie (literally the lighting/the celluloid palette) but dangerously mushy (to its defense it was romantic comedy and they are definitionally mushy). "When did you fall in love with hip hop?" Eck. Of course this question frames all of the female journalist's (Sanaa Lathan) interviews? Let's talk more about informed decisions not just conjured feeling.

All that said I'm not against love. But it shouldn't omnisciently narrate women's behavior.

Disclaimer: This is so not fleshed out. I'm all over the place. This is a blog.

*Someone may have used this formulation earlier. If so please advise.