THH: An Ulterior Message in 'Bringing Booty Back' | Teen Ink

THH: An Ulterior Message in 'Bringing Booty Back'

September 27, 2014
By AlaNova ELITE, Naperville, Illinois
AlaNova ELITE, Naperville, Illinois
257 articles 0 photos 326 comments

Favorite Quote:
Dalai Lama said, "There are only two days in the year that nothing can be done. One is called YESTERDAY and the other is called TOMORROW, so today is the right day to love, believe, do, and mostly live..."

Lately on the rise has been the rather frank topic of…butts. Oh, you know, shaking “dat booty” on the dance floor in nifty fishnet stockings, “working” and “twerking” and showing just how much you don’t care.

One of the most noticeable of these calls to attention to this has been Nicki Minaj’s 2014 smash hit “Anaconda.” Exclusively explicit and already racking up hundreds of millions of hits (thumbs up or down), the video takes place in the jungle and raucously celebrates endless taboos. And just a few days ago Jennifer Lopez has emerged with her latest M/V, “Booty,” featuring Iggy Azalea, a video that is wildly similar in the retrospect it has its camera eye solely on a girl’s tan, humongous butt.

This awakens an age-old struggle in the image of the American ‘sexy’ lady—everybody’s trying to look like her. And from the depths of the pearly 20s flapper to the flamboyant 60s hair, to the neon-crazed 2000s, some pretty wild trends have shaken history. But rarely has her figure changed; in fact, it seems like skinny has always been in style.

And it really shouldn’t. Studies have shown this has been one of the primary causes in depression, male or female, and numbers of those who have perished to Anorexia nervosa—an eating disorder that makes someone lose more weight than healthy for their age or height—are outright horrific. It’s an unattainable, unhealthy goal, and it makes sense that we should speak against it.

But should that—and can that—bring us to the other extreme? Now, many powerhouse she-songstresses have started owning their music with powerful messages about size and shape; Meghan Trainor’s “All About That Bass” has topped radio stations for weeks now, and even Jessie J’s “Bang Bang” featuring Ariana Grande and Nicki Minaj pay homage with the lines “She got a booty like an hourglass…She got a booty like a Cadillac…” Yes, lots of these tributes have welcome words in their acceptance of all, but others seem to have a much more intense message in mind—bring on the butt.

In other words, we are being fed yet another helpless aspiration of what the Gorgeous Woman should look like: tan, busty, drastically shapely, breathless, and wielding one big rear end. We’ve seen it in this video on her Twitter feed, we’ve seen it slathered all over this person’s Instagram…and this one…and this one as well. It might be a little healthier than the model Size-O many others obsess over, but in the end, is it really much better? Tina Fey admits in her bestselling novel Bossypants, “All Beyoncé and JLo have done is add to the laundry list of attributes women must have to qualify as beautiful.”

Because when you weren’t accepted in the weight range to become America’s Next Top Model, and you also didn’t have a butt big enough for a music video back-up dancer, you’re flat out told you’re out of luck. You’re no longer in the space-range of society beauty—and this is shaping the next generation of insecure youths as well. A whole wave of pubescent girls and boys start talking about thongs and leg flesh decades too early, and YouTube is again dubbed on the first page of weary parents’ death notes.

So when “Anaconda” hits the topic of discussion at school for the third time in the day, what will you be thinking? More importantly, what will you be saying?

The author's comments:

What does "THH" stand for? Good question! It's THE HOLY HITCHHIKE... No, I’m not even religious. The name is Ala Nova, and you have entered the domain of my discussion, thought, and paraphernalia. Enjoy, and let loose your commentary and suggestions below. A new column every Friday!


Also, apologies this issue came a day late. The snooze button was being far too friendly yesterday, and I just zoned out of it after I got home and flopped on the bed. 

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