8 Ways The Schuyler Sisters Were The Original 'Nasty Women'

8 Ways The Schuyler Sisters Were The Original 'Nasty Women'

You want a revolution? I want a revelation.
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By this point, two years after they debuted on Broadway, every musical theatre fan and even non-theatre people (if there were ever a thing) have heard of the smash hit musical Hamilton. I think it is safe to say that the majority of pop culture followers have all heard at least one song, or at least part of a song from the album, at one point or another.

Now, I could go on and on for years about how amazing I think each song is, or how amazing the OBC was, or how great the characters were developed. However, I want to hone in on three very important characters. Not because they drive this story of Alexander Hamilton's life, (even though 2/3 of them are part of the reason we know his story today) but because in one song they stole the show in an amazing, über feminist way.

I present to you all: The Schuyler Sisters.

The Schuyler sisters consist of Angelica, Peggy (Margarita), and Eliza (Elizabeth) Schuyler. Angelica (originated by Renée Elise Goldsberry), Peggy (originated by Jasmine Cephas Jones), and Eliza (originated by Phillipa Soo) were first fully introduced to us 5 songs into the musical, (Alexander Hamilton doesn't count because they are not introduced by name yet) in the appropriately named song, "The Schuyler Sisters". The Schuyler Sisters is the first song where we are fully introduced to these three Nasty Women. In one song, they embody what it means to be a feminist. If you've never heard the song before, there's a studio version of it on Spotify or YouTube, but here are the three icons at WORK during last year's Tony Awards (of course with Leslie Odom Jr. as Aaron Burr). Do be aware that they cut the beginning half of the song for timing purposes.

Now that I am 100% positive that you have not been living under a rock and have been exposed to this masterpiece, here, I present to you, a line-by-line breakdown of how I have come to believe that the Schuyler sisters could have possibly been the OG Nasty Women:

Now I feel like again it is my duty to explain, in case there was someone who did adapt to life under a rock. This is what Urban Dictionary defines a Nasty Woman as. It was a term used in a negative connotation towards Hillary Clinton during the 2016 Presidential Election. Rather than letting a hateful person turn that into a negative term, feminists coined the term and made it their battle cry, the word that encompasses everything a feminist is: a fighter of a woman who won't conform to societal gender roles and expectations in the workplace, in the public eye, or in one's personal life. Women who want to be treated equally to men, but if they are smarter than the man they go up against, they expect to be treated as such, not as 'smart for a woman,' but as an intellectual. These women will not cower and will not accept that they can't do something because it is "not becoming" or "not lady-like," and they will put men and/or women in their place if needed.

1. Nasty Women Seek Change (Revolution)

Now, as to the video: What you don't see in this clip, is that we begin with Aaron Burr setting the scene in Downtown New York City. This is nothing major that the Schuyler Sisters say or do, but it's the pure fact that although they 'aren't supposed' to go downtown, they do anyway because that is the way they can watch all the guys at work- aka the revolution that is forming.

2. Nasty Women Will Be A Part Of The Change/Leading Change/Fighting For Change

The way Nasty Women in 2017 are drawn to social justice issues and fighting for what is right and are on the social forefront of change, so were the Schuyler Sisters. They were sneaking into the city constantly to get even a glimpse of the action and be a part of the revolution (as much as women could get involved in that time period). They also were smart enough to recognize that change and revolution were coming and that they were fortunate enough to be right where it was happening, which is happening now in 2017 with the Feminist Movement. Especially, again, in major places like NYC and DC.

3. Nasty Women Seek New Ideas And Excitement

The Schuyler Sisters, more specifically, Eliza and Angelica, being older, see the shouting in the square as new ideas in the air. Peggy, being younger, in the beginning, sees the city as what she is taught to think- war and violence. Where Peggy has been trained to see war and violence, Eliza and Angelica see change. They want to be there for the change.

4. Nasty Women Know What They Want

Here we really discover that Angelica is the mastermind behind this all- being the oldest, she holds the most power in this trio. It was her idea to sneak into the city, Eliza is mostly on board but still seems a little unsure, and Peggy is still just trying to do what she's told by her father but also her older sisters. But by the end, they're all kick-ass women who believe in change and revolution. Eliza asks a pivotal question in this moment: remind me what we're looking for. This is where we see the true reason the girls have traveled so far. She's looking for a mind at work. Angelica's not looking for a man to sweep her off her feet romantically, she's looking for someone to sweep her off of her feet intellectually- the true sign of a Nasty Woman.

5. Nasty Women Won't Entertain Ignorance

Enter Aaron Burr, attempting to schmooze and charm his way into Angelica's interests, as he often does, trying to charm his way through life.

6. Nasty Women Will Call You Out

Alas, Angelica sees right through it. She knows he's not on her level of intellect and sees him for his true intent- her family's money and status.

7. Nasty Women Are Intellectuals

HERE IS MY FAVORITE PART IN THE WHOLE SONG. Here, Angelica, instead of sticking to gender roles of that day's society and playing the quiet, obedient woman who doesn't speak out, she challenges that. She takes on Burr in a way that says, "you must have no idea who you're dealing with". She has a dream of equality for men AND women (as do ALL Nasty Women). She also has immense faith in her own intellect and her ability to change things within the government due to her family's high social status. She is incredibly well educated on 'men's things' such as the way the government works and is well-read on major/new topics within the government at that time (i.e. Common Sense, The Declaration of Independence,etc.) She was also intuitive and "woke," I guess you could say, enough to recognize that all men are created equal was excluding women, whether it was meant to or not.

8. Nasty Women Stick Together/Attract Other NW

And finally, we have three kick-ass nasty women. Eliza and Peggy have seen Angelica's views and are fully on board, being exposed to the world and the revolution in the way they have now been. From this point to the end of the song, which is just repetitions of the last two original verses and then they bring the song to an end with their names again... "Angelicaaaa/Elizaaa/AndPeggy/The Schuyler Sisters/We're looking for a mind at work..."



There you have it! These women were amazing women who saw and recognized the change happening in their country and were at the forefront of it while they were still young! There's so much more development to Angelica and Eliza throughout the entire show that we don't see it all in one song, but wow, if that's not a great intro to these women!

While I do in the future plan on writing a 'sequel' to this that includes ALL of the Schuyler Sister's top lines in the entire show, @ Lin-Manuel Miranda I'm still waiting for you to let me know when I should expect YOUR sequel- the story of JUST Eliza, Angelica, and Peggy even when they're not related to A-Ham himself! I guess we'll never know...

Cover Image Credit: NYT Video

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'Baby, It's Cold Outside' Is NOT About Date Rape, It's A Fight Against Social Norms Of The 1940s

The popular Christmas song shouldn't be considered inappropriate.

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The classic Christmas song "Baby, It's Cold Outside" has recently come under attack. There has been controversy over the song being deemed as inappropriate since it has been suggested that it promotes date rape. Others believe that the song is another common example of our culture's promotion of rape. You may be wondering, where did they get that idea from?

The controversy has led to one radio station, WDOK, taking the song off the air and banning it from their station. Some people believe that this song goes against the #MeToo movement since it promotes rape. However, people are not considering the fact that this traditional Christmas song was made in the 1940s.

People are viewing the song from a modern-day cultural perspective rather than from the perspective of the 1940s. "Baby, It's Cold Outside" was written in 1944. Many people have viewed the song from the perspective of our cultural and social norms. People believe that the song promotes date rape because of lyrics that suggest that the male singing is trying to stop the female singer from leaving, and the female singer is constantly singing about trying to escape with verses like "I really can't stay" or "I've got to go home."

When you first view the song from the perspective of today's culture, you may jump to the conclusion that the song is part of the date rape culture. And it's very easy to jump to this conclusion, especially when you are viewing only one line from the song. We're used to women being given more freedom. In our society, women can have jobs, marry and be independent. However, what everyone seems to forget is that women did not always have this freedom.

In 1944, one of the social norms was that women had curfews and were not allowed to be in the same house as a man at a later time. It was considered a scandal if a single woman so much as stayed at another man's house, let alone be in the same room together. It's mind-blowing, right? You can imagine that this song was probably considered very provocative for the time period.

"Baby, It's Cold Outside" is not a song that encourages date rape, but is actually challenging the social norms of society during the time period. When you listen to the song, you notice that at one part of the song, the female states, "At least I can say that I tried," which suggests that she really doesn't want to leave. In fact, most of the song, she is going back and forth the whole time about leaving stating, "I ought to say no…well maybe just a half a drink more," and other phrases.

She doesn't want to leave but doesn't really have a choice due to fear of causing a scandal, which would have consequences with how others will treat her. It was not like today's society where nobody cares how late someone stays at another man's house. Nowadays, we could care less if we heard that our single neighbor stayed over a single man's house after 7. We especially don't try to look through our curtain to check on our neighbor. Well, maybe some of us do. But back then, people did care about where women were and what they were doing.

The female singer also says in the lyrics, "The neighbors might think," and, "There's bound to be talk tomorrow," meaning she's scared of how others might perceive her for staying with him. She even says, "My sister will be suspicious," and, "My brother will be there at the door," again stating that she's worried that her family will find out and she will face repercussions for her actions. Yes, she is a grown woman, but that doesn't mean that she won't be treated negatively by others for going against the social norms of the time period.

Then why did the male singer keep pressuring her in the song? This is again because the song is more about challenging the social norms of the time period. Both the female and male singers in the song are trying to find excuses to stay and not leave.

On top of that, when you watch the video of the scene in which the song was originally viewed, you notice that the genders suddenly switch for another two characters, and now it's a female singer singing the male singer's part and vice versa. You also notice that the whole time, both characters are attracted to one another and trying to find a way to stay over longer.

Yes, I know you're thinking it doesn't matter about the genders. But, the song is again consensual for both couples. The woman, in the beginning, wants to stay but knows what will await if she doesn't leave. The male singer meanwhile is trying to convince her to forget about the rules for the time period and break them.

In addition, the complaint regarding the lyric "What's in this drink?" is misguided. What a lot of people don't understand is that back in 1944, this was a common saying. If you look at the lyrics of the song, you notice that the woman who is singing is trying to blame the alcoholic drink for causing her to want to stay longer instead of leaving early. It has nothing to do with her supposed fear that he may have tried to give her too much to drink in order to date rape her. Rather, she is trying to find something to blame for her wanting to commit a scandal.

As you can see, when you view the song from the cultural perspective of the 1940s, you realize that the song could be said to fight against the social norms of that decade. It is a song that challenges the social constrictions against women during the time period. You could even say that it's an example of women's rights, if you wanted to really start an argument.

Yes, I will admit that there were movies and songs made back in the time period that were part of the culture of date rape. However, this song is not the case. It has a historical context that cannot be viewed from today's perspective.

The #MeToo movement is an important movement that has led to so many changes in our society today. However, this is not the right song to use as an example of the date rape culture.

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Refugees Are Human Beings, No Exceptions

Stop acting like their brown lives don't matter.

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Earlier this week photos arose informing the world that Trump had decided to tear gas migrants seeking asylum at the US-Mexican border. Seventy-plus refugee men, women and children were seen caught in a cloud of painful gas as they fled from what had seemed to be their only protection.

They were a part of a caravan of over 5,000 refugees traveling from far and wide seeking protection. They fled widespread gang violence and extreme poverty, which left them no choice but to leave for a better life or die.

Despite our country's raging racism and domestic terrorism issues, it seems like a vacation compared to the conditions the refugees have to deal with. Many believe that the motivation to come to the U.S. stems from a noble cause to make money for your family and start anew, but these refugees are running for their lives. Their home countries, wrecked by U.S. policies that forced convicted criminals back, suffer from an infestation of gang activities and civil wars.

Their youth are enticed into gangs in order to support their families and an endless cycle of gang violence and continued inequalities creates a dangerous atmosphere. Local police and judicial systems try to control the violence but gangs are so rampant there seems to be no solution.

There is danger at every corner and the only light seems to be America, a predominately Christian country founded by immigrants fleeing persecution and danger.

Rather than being met with help and kindness, a tyrant of a president has continuously failed to meet the requirements of normal humanity. Placing them in cages, separating families, tear gassing children; it seems as if these brown lives also do not matter to the president.

Refugees are humans, with families and needs just like our own. They seek help and safety, nothing more, and as human beings, we must extend them kindness. Our country claims to be a world superpower, "effectively" delegating wars from afar and balancing world peace. But what is to say about what's happening to our neighbor's next door? How could we ignore the atrocities they continue to face as if they do not share the same Earth as ours?

The treatment we continue to see forced upon these refugees is disgusting especially since the Christmas season nears. Seventy-five percent of Americans identify as Christian, with 73% of the GOP identifying as Christian, and yet they lack the human decency and Christian duty to care for refugees.

It seems they have forgotten their own Savior was a refugee, seeking shelter and kindness where none was found. It seems their kindness only extends to their close circle, eliminating a chance for these brown lives to matter. It seems like American Christians have strayed far from their faith to appeal to political ideology and a burnt orange tyrant who cares about only himself.

Refugees are human beings. They are important and they are in danger. Stop treating them like their brown lives do not matter.

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