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Anne is reading …
Erykah Badu, ‘The Flaming Lips’
At AOC we’re thinking carefully and closely about Erykah Badu’s dramatic and unsettling video with Wayne Coyne, a video that Erykah says violated the vision laid out to her and also one that was released with getting her approval on either the images of the lyrics, in a violation of her contract. Wayne Coyne doesn’t disagree.
In a long Facebook post, referenced by Think Progress, Erykah writes:
You showed me a concept of beautiful tasteful imagery( by way of vid text messages). I trusted that. I was mistaken…You begged me to sit in a tub of that other shit and I said naw. I refused to sit in any liquid that was not water. But Out of RESPECT for you and the artist you ‘appear’ to be, I Didn’t wanna kill your concept , wanted u to at least get it out of your head . After all, u spent your dough on studio , trip to Dallas etc.. Sooo, I invited Nayrok , my lil sis and artist, who is much more liberal ,to be subject of those other disturbing (to me ) scenes .
In terms of its artistry, I feel an honesty in the video that transcends the prurient interests of the Penthouse, Hustler crowd. The undercurrent of bloody, historical violence, rape and assault against black women comes through loud and clear with Wayne Coyne’s visuals and other sound effects.
The video is honest in terms of its confrontation. There is extreme beauty in Erykah Badu’s body and how she uses it in water. And there is violence and the suggestion of a participatory submission. Yes, that is unsettling but I lived through this unsettling issue of female submission last fall with a young woman I was ‘sponsoring’ artistically.
Watching her female vision move into the direction of submission and bondage — while she blamed feminism for the problems between men and women — I, too, felt violated. Of course I supported this young woman exercising her artistic rights, but when I am committed to ending the flogging of 40,000 women a year in Sudan, how could she promote this vision of the natural submission of women in my digital house. Now she’s into Japanese rope bondage, leaving me finished with her artistry for good.
I’m inspired to think further and write more on ‘The Flaming Lips’. There’s a truthfulness to this video that is searing. ~Anne
A Hustle Is A Hustle
For Sister Margaret Farley Responsible Pleasure Is Not a Sin AOC Sensual Rebel
I understand the deep provocation of Erykah Badu’s controversial video and the juxtaposition of my Sensual Rebel column from yesterday.
Regular Sensual Rebel readers know that I suffered deep pain this winter, trying to help a Cathlic monk and his mission in Massachusetts. After warning him repeatedly that our collaboration would never fly, I agreed to write our 2 Ps in a Pod blog and promote his skin cream. The experience was devastating on every possible level for me, as I was judged by members of his flock and finally thrown completely onto the street by possible investors as a harlot. I can only say that I hope he got his money.
… Bro. Dennis asked me to remember him in my will a couple weeks after we began talking. I found that odd — given the small time we had known each other. He told me I was like a true sister, a woman like so few he had known in life — and I believed his words because they were the first kind words about me from the Catholic boys club in decades. It’s been all downhill for me since Father Ben sided with the sexual predator who violated me as a young woman, and denied me communion as punishment for my sins.
At the end of the day, I was hustled and preyed upon by Bro. Dennis just as Badu says she was hustled. She participated in her hustle, as I participated in mine. Being artists, we seek men we can believe in. Often, the mission goes dreadfully wrong — yet there is a lesson there for learning. ~ Anne
Anne of Carversville
AOC Private Studio