M.I.A. Does It Again and #Yesallwomen
One of my recent tweets read, “#YesAllWomen because we’ll spend a whole freaking social media day on this, hoping our kids won’t have to.” I really do hope this feminist fight isn’t all for naught, and realistically I know it isn’t. Still, it was only today that I saw the recently released video for “Double Bubble Trouble,” after a full weekend of #yesallwomen following Elliot Rodger’s pathetically destructive rampage. This dystopian video depicts every parent’s nightmare for their child’s future. It’s rather fitting that M.I.A. finally released her self-directed video on YouTube after a lengthy battle with her record label. Aside from the relatively more obvious symbols of female oppression in this future dystopia, like M.I.A. herself wearing a grill shaped like a mini-prison, here are a few more interesting tidbits that invoke in me the same disgust as in women worldwide after perusing Elliot Rodger’s sad, wretchedly misogynistic manifesto:
1. At about 1:02, we see three women all in identical black camis, seemingly with no other purpose than to please men, and deserving no individuality. Interestingly enough, they’re all blonde. As a skeptic, I don’t believe in fate, but that’s formidable foreshadowing to say the least, considering the manifesto’s contemptible ramblings about “blonde sluts.”
2. At 1:20 in the video, we see three Muslim women in niqabs. These niqabs depict white women’s faces. On the surface, this is a commentary on the whitewashing and westernization unavoidable around the globe. But again, these three women’s images are all identical. Their true nature and individuality is trapped behind the masks. Furthermore, they have pretty smiles plastered on perpetually, as if it’s womankind’s collective duty to be nothing more than pretty, docile, and content with their lot. Again, these images are all blonde. Coincidence, but haunting nonetheless.
3. At 2:11 in the video, we see an abomination of a multi-armed Hindu goddess. Traditionally, goddesses like Kali represent female power and control. Here, the arms are, quite literally, made of arms (guns.) Is this a commentary on the sad truth that in this day and age, as women, we must be armed to wield power against men who can shoot us if we dare disobey their will?
Either way, the above are my own interpretations. Check out the video and see for yourself: