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Lily Allen: closet feminist?

So Lily Allen's new music video just come out for her song 22. And it got me thinking. I've always listened to Lily Allen, and thought "there's just something about her I really, really like." 

People have called her lyrics mean, brutal, bitchy, but the thing is they're just honest and apt commentaries about how fucked up it is to be a girl in this society.

In her song 22 she sings about how young girls who comply with society's standards are just left in the dust, only valued for their youth and beauty and how depressing this is. Such a feminist musing, such a truism -- no wonder people scold her for being a downer.

And then there's The Fear, which describes the pressures of fame on young girls. So completely honest, no glamorization of the ugly world of fame and beauty. 

And people may think that these lyrics are her voice, what she wants and what she believes. As in the Fear, I've heard people make comments like, "I can't believe she just says how much she wants fame and money." Which may be true, but in a way I feel like it's Lily's observations about society taken into the first person - not necessarily her own ideas.

And even if they are, she's completely unapologetic about admitting how society has made her act. It's like she's admitting, "maybe all I was concerned with was being beautiful, rich, famous. But I get it now - I get how society has influenced me."

And people may not understand it, but she's fucking empowered. The only thing is I feel like maybe she doesn't see it. She seems to be just expressing depression over the unfairness of an often sexist society. 

My open note to Lily Allen: Feminism is what comes after that. Feminism is the positive answer to that depression. JOIN USSSSSS LILLLLYYYYYY! 

Watch/Listen/Observe for yourself: 

22

Lyrics: When she was 22 the future looked bright But she's nearly 30 now and she's out every night I see that look in her face she's got that look in her eye She's thinking how did I get here and wondering why

It's sad but it's true how society says Her life is already over There's nothing to do and there's nothing to say Til the man of her dreams comes along picks her up and puts her over his shoulder It seems so unlikely in this day and age

She's got an alright job but it's not a career Wherever she thinks about it, it brings her to tears Cause all she wants is a boyfriend She gets one-night stands She's thinking how did I get here I'm doing all that I can

It's sad but it's true how society says Her life is already over There's nothing to do and there's nothing to say Til the man of her dreams comes along picks her up and puts her over his shoulder It seems so unlikely in this day and age

It's sad but it's true how society says Her life is already over There's nothing to do and there's nothing to say Til the man of her dreams comes along picks her up and puts her over his shoulder It seems so unlikely in this day and age

The Fear

Lyrics: 

I want to be rich and I want lots of money I don’t care about clever I don’t care about funny I want loads of clothes and i want fuckloads of diamonds I heard people die while they are trying to find them

And i’ll take my clothes off and it will be shameless Cuz everyone knows that’s how you get famous I’ll look at the sun and I’ll look in the mirror I’m on the right track yeah I’m on to a winner

I don’t know what’s right and what’s real anymore I don’t know how I’m meant to feel anymore When do you think it will all become clear? ‘Cuz I’m being taken over by The Fear

Life’s about film stars and less about mothers  It’s all about fast cars concussing each other But it doesn’t matter cause I’m packing plastic and that’s what makes my life so fucking fantastic

And I am a weapon of massive consumption And its not my fault it’s how I’m programmed to function I’ll look at the sun and I’ll look in the mirror I’m on the right track yeah we're on to a winner

I don’t know what’s right and what’s real anymore I don’t know how I’m meant to feel anymore When do you think it will all become clear? ‘Cuz I’m being taken over by The Fear

Forget about guns and forget ammunition Cause I’m killing them all on my own little mission Now I’m not a saint but I’m not a sinner Now everything's cool as long as I’m gettin thinner

I don’t know what’s right and what’s real anymore I don’t know how I’m meant to feel anymore When do you think it will all become clear? ‘Cause I’m being taken over by fear



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Julie Zeilinger
Founding Editor of The WMC FBomb
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