Cool Girls in Track Pants: A Look at the Women of Hip-Hop

[Sheetal Lodhia offers this appreciation of some of her favourite hip-hop women, especially those from the 90s.  This article first appeared at The Toast. -AC]

Beyoncé’s latest album, which I love, has reignited the eternal conversation about music, the female body, and feminism. Here’s Mia McKenzie, on Beyoncé’s use of the work of feminist Chimananda Ngozi Adichie:

In Adiche’s words, a feminist is “a person who believes in the social, economic and political equality of the sexes.” This seems to be Beyoncé’s way of declaring herself a feminist. I like the quote, I think it’s important, and I’m really glad it’s there. I would add:

…and who is able to look at the world with a critical eye so as to be able to identify those times and places where that equality is not present.

In the spirit of identifying a lack of equality, I’m reminded of a time in the recent past when there was simply more variety in female performances, and an environment in which a range of girls–cool girls in track pants–were given the opportunity to thrive.

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Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 30+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

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