In Search of Good Rap: Let’s Stop Condoning Misogyny

In Search of Good Rap: Let’s Stop Condoning Misogyny

Why is Future's album DS2 ranked one of the best albums of 2015?
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Content Warning: explicit language, sex, violence

The other day, in a panicked frenzy over what to gift my younger brother for Christmas, I searched “best albums of 2015” online. My family is large, so we use the secret Santa system. I figured an amazing CD could add something to the sorry state of his gift haul.

My search produced a list, compiled by Google, labeled “Music Albums Frequently Mentioned on the Web”, containing the following:

1. To Pimp a Butterfly - Kendrick Lamar
2. Sometimes I Sit and Think, and Sometimes I just Sit - Courtney Barnett
3. Vulnicura - Bjork
4. Carrie & Lowell - Sufjan Stevens
5. If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late - Drake
6. Summertime ’06 - Vince Staples
7. The Epic - Kamasi Washington
8. Wildheart - Miguel
9. Currents - Tame Impala
10. Surf
11. In Colour - Jamie xx
12. DS2 - Future









My brother’s heard Kendrick’s album. The next top three albums—all of which I love—are not to his taste. So I just picked an album at random: DS2 by Future, ranked the 12th most frequently mentioned album on the Internet.

On Christmas day, we all opened our presents; thank you’s were exchanged. It felt wholesome. Until a few days later, when I looked up Future’s album, listened to it all the way through and suffered serious disappointment.

Turns out, I had gifted my brother some of the most misogynistic, albeit critically acclaimed, tracks.

Some of the more memorable lines of DS2 include:

“I just had some b*tches and I made ‘em lip lock”
“Hit that b*tch while I’m choking her out”
“I f*ck on your b*tch and I’ll prove it”
"She gon’ come f*ck me whenever, whenever I want her”
“She a hoe and a slut and a metaphor”



Critics have called Future’s album “the crown jewel of his creative peak”, a “star-studded ‘honest’ album”. Pitchfork’s review states: “His rapping is nimble and dreamy… it’s a strange record… The production is mostly slow and sad… What kind of darkness is this guy experiencing?”

Indeed. The entire album is depressing, with drugs, money, and “pu**y” (i.e. women, human beings) being the three objects at play. Pitchfork doesn’t feel the need to bring up how utterly abusive the album is to women. Because misogyny in rap is a given. Duh.

According to Wiki and more legitimate sources, 22 percent to 37 percent of rap music is misogynistic. Almost all great (male) rap artists have some line out there that’s questionable. But why is this so unquestioned, so acceptable?

I only recently started listening to rap. I had always written it off as not being substantive, until about a year ago when I was introduced to Lupe Fiasco. Lupe is without a doubt the James Joyce of rap—his dense lyrics never end, and it takes several read-throughs on Rap Genius to understand all of his allusions. From Lupe, I moved to Kendrick Lamar, Chance the Rapper, and Childish Gambino. I was astounded to see my old prejudices fall apart in the emotional raw intensity of Kendrick’s “The Blacker the Berry”, Lupe’s “Murals”, and even Kanye West’s “Blood on the Leaves”. But for every talented, complex rap song out there, there are ten, utterly mind-numbing, offensive ones.

Would Future’s lyrics be acceptable in any other genre? Could John Mayer produce a new album with a parallel lyric to “pull out my dick and I pee on her”? Or let’s switch roles. Could misandristic woman succeed in the music industry? Could a woman sing a parallel lyric to “I ain’t got no manners for no sluts/ I’ma put my thumb in her butt” about men? Sure, these comparisons are crude and grate against what we know to be acceptable about music. But that’s the point.

Let’s not kid ourselves. Women would never succeed with such explicit, sadistic lyrics against men. And if they did, critics wouldn’t be calling the album “honest” and “depressing”. They would call it f***ed up.

Truthfully, going through Future’s lyrics to write this article made me feel sick. But a hundred times more disturbing is the fact that this album is ranked as one of the top 20 best albums of the year. As an amateur rap listener, I’ll be in search of anti-Futuresque music, despite what the critics say. Sorry, bro.

Cover Image Credit: Georgia Kasamias

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100 Of The Best Vines Of All Time

Hi, welcome to Chili's!
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Not to be dramatic, but the Vine app was the best thing to ever happen to me.

The Vine app truly understood me and my extremely odd sense of humor. When it was shut down, I felt like a part of me shut down with it. Luckily, I still have the ability to reflect on the good times that I had with Vine. Although there aren't any new Vine videos keeping my spirit alive, the Vine videos from the past are enough to keep me going.

This is way overdue, but here are the 100 best Vines to ever exist (in no particular order).

1. You better stop.

2. Come get y'all juice.

3. WTF is up Kyle.

4. That is NOT correct.

5. Mr. Postman.

6. Good evening.

7. This is your space, this is your area.

8. Honestly not sure what to title this one, but it's great so.

9. Someone help Elmo.

10. Pst...what?

11. Can I get a waffle?

12. Welcome back to Jesus Christ Hotline.

13. Oooooh, my boy going to school.

14. Lebron James.

15. #1 Dad.

16. Two bros chillin' in the hot tub.

17. Iz the fourth of July.

18. You have to say that you're fine and you're not really fine.

19. Tweaka Tweaka.

20. Hi, welcome to Chili's.

21. What up, I'm Jared.

22. If you wanna be a dog, RUFF.

23. When you think you look fresh, but your fish disagrees.

24. Rat in Walmart.

25. I'm dying... without me?

26. White ppl will turn anything into a casserole.

27. So you just gonna bring me a birthday gift on my birthday to my birthday party on my birthday with a birthday gift.

28. You want a french fry? Eat a french fry.

29. ifyoulikemakingloveatmidnight.

30. Ms. Keisha.

31. Girl you're thicker than a bowl of oatmeal.

32. My cinnamon apple.

33. Two shots of vodka.

34. Whoever threw that paper.

35. Wow.

36. Do the math.

37. Rip your face off.

38. Fed up teacher.

39. You can't kill me.

40. Look at me now snake.

41. Walking a duck.

42. No matter when you pause this one, it's hilarious.

43. I don't even understand this one.

44. I dropped my hot pocket.

45. I thought you were American.

46. I can't swim.

47. I wanna be a cowboy.

48. I look like Mona Lisa.

49. Look at this graph.

50. Yungman.

51. Squidward dabbing

52. Living with Nicholas Cage.

53. If Tinder had video profiles.

54. Why you always lying.

55. Chicken wing ch-chi-chicken wing.

56. Uh my chicle.

57. Love the Nickleback version.

58. Any excuse to nae nae.

59. I want to be famous.

60. That's my opinion.

61. There she goes.

62. I have to restart my potatoes.

63. And they don't stop coming.

64. Cat horn.

65. Who is she.

66. The bob.

67. Summertime.

68. Do I look like.

69. Nice Ron.

70. Mom hearing 'Only' by Nicki Minaj for the first time.

71. Happy fourth of July.

72. I'm washing me and my clothes.

73. Nickel the creatorback.

74. Give me your money.

75. U stoopid.

76. Shrek at school.

77. Patricia honey can you be quiet.

78. No baby.

79. You've got a big storm coming.

80. Out shopping with my coven.

81. Extreme makeover home edition.

82. They were roommates.

83. White girl trying to remember the day she was born.

84. xoxo, gossip girl.

85. Big time rush.

86. Scared grandma throwing milk.

87. Suicide fairy.

88. Zoey 101 microwave.

89. When you leave your makeup on after a night out.

90. Crazy skateboarding tricks.

91. Noodle head.

92. Under all that makeup.

93. Marriage goals.

94. Boy putting on lipstick.

95. When you walk past your friend's class.

96. Clear elevator jamming.

97. #RunningManChallenge

98. T-T-T-T-Target.

99. We all have a lot of laughs.

100. High school musical.

Honestly, I still can think of 100 more of the greatest vines of all time... but I guess I should stop now.

Cover Image Credit: NY Mag

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5 Quick Tips To Improve Your Focus And Time Management Skills

Here are five easy tips that helped my sense of productivity along the way.

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Lately, I've been pretty disappointed in my time management skills. I've been struggling to not only maintain all of my obligations but also my sense of joy while completing each task. And although I'd love to rain check on my responsibilities, I know that extended mental vacations are not a beneficial solution for long-term purposes. With this in mind, I've recently observed the ways that I manage my time as well as the methods I use to better improve my work ethic.
As a result of my personal inventory, I decided to make a brief list of tricks that I use to better improve my time management skills and focus.

1. Find articles that encourage organization

I've been reading articles about managing obligations and discovering cool methods to better organize my life. A specific blog post that I've found helpful is "Get Your Life Together Tools" by Mariah Dyson. This brief article is extremely easy to read and filled with useful apps to help readers stay focus on their tasks at hand. The link to this gem is below:

https://www.andsoitcurls.com/blog/majorkeys-tools

2. Listen to a podcast that you enjoy


If you're anything like me, you probably work best with background noise. Now, while I love my Netflix account, I've recently discovered that binge-watching my favorite shows is only a distraction when I'm trying to meet a deadline. So, instead of compromising my focus I've recently decided to save my favorite podcasts episodes for when I'm bogged down with work.

3. Approach your 'to-do' list with positive perspective

THIS IS A MAJOR ONE FOR ME! I have a terrible habit of complaining about my workload. And while it's easy to murmur about my obligations the effects of my comments are detrimental. I've been purposely replacing the phrase "I have to" with "I get to," to remind myself that every obligation is a blessing. I'm blessed to have a job and opportunities to fulfill.

4. Color-code your planner to better prioritize your day

I learned this trick while working on my bachelor's degree and honey, please believe me when I say that this tip alone saved my undergraduate experience. I'm a huge advocate for visual representation, and having my planner organized by color is a quick way to check in and manage my priorities throughout a hectic day.

5. Manage your progress

Lately, I've been taking great joy in checking off tasks from my "to-do list." Again, being a fan of visualization, it's rewarding to know that I've completed yet another task. This technique also serves as a healthy dose of encouragement to keep on trekking along, because the reality is if you could buckle down to achieve your goals once before, you can certainly do it again.

If anything, I hope that this list leaves you with healthy options to consider, when trying to tackle a stressful day.

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