As far as I’m concerned, Rihanna can do no wrong. I think the video for ‘Rude Boy’ can only really be described as perfect, and I literally cannot control my own limbs whenever ‘what’s my name?’ comes on in a club. I think she’s a genuinely talented woman, with an individual sense of style and a magnificent bum. So maybe I’m a little too biased to write anything at all objective about the woman, but I’m going to anyway.
In case anyone hadn’t heard, there has been quite a bit of controversy about the video for her new single ‘S&M’, surprisingly enough it features references to sadomasochism, bondage, and lots of sex. But no more so then many pop videos past and present. Sex and some of its more risqué elements have been an inspiration for high fashion, art and music for decades, so why should this not extend to music videos? It’s not even like it hasn’t before.
I wonder where this fear of sex comes from; we are living in 2011, decades after the development of the pill and female sexual revolution. Sex controls almost every aspect of our lives, so why on earth shouldn’t that be portrayed in what we create? In March of last year Terry Richardson, a photographer known for his overtly sexual images, faced multiple allegations of misconduct and exploitation. The facts however were incredibly difficult to obtain, due in no small part to a ridiculously predisposed media force.
And it’s a shame. Our bodies and our sexuality are gifts. With a weighty history of political and sociological change to bring us to a point where we need not be afraid of them, where in almost every aspect, we can do what we want with them. It’s not only our privilege to show the beauty in them, it’s our duty.