Culture Expert Says Ishawna’s Song Signals Power Shift

Well-known talk show host and cultural activist, Dr. Donna Hope believe the recently released song by Ishawna titled ‘Equal Rights’ indicates a power shift in dancehall.

“A lot of people have been trying to grapple with the idea that a woman who looks like her (pretty and sexy) would be demanding the sexual pleasure that she really should be giving. She should be the object of sexual pleasure,” Dr. Donna Hope told The Weekend Star.

“The language that she uses is what is ruffling a lot of feathers. Remember that the way oral sex is delivered, the man would have to be kneeling. The male identity is very strong and so the idea of ‘bowing’ has taken away from their power dynamic and who is in charge in the bedroom.” She adds.

Notwithstanding, the backlash that Ishawna has since been receiving in the dancehall fraternity the females are endorsing her and Dr. Hope is of the view that the song and the timing is working in the artiste favour as the term ‘Equal Rights’ can be associated with gender activism.

“Ishawna’s song and the time in which it has come out is working in her favour. The term ‘equal rights’ is like gender activism and so people are running with that. We have evolved in terms of how repressive we are. It is now harder for us to ignore a song like that,” she said, noting that women are calling for the song and some selectors have been yielding. She said.

Ishawna has also received support from fellow artiste Tanya Stephens, in a Facebook post a few days ago.

“(The singles) Bow and Salute as well as Freaky Type early in my career both earned me scorn from the ‘moral’ critics for daring to speak favourably of oral sex for the first time ever in dancehall music. The reaction to this song (Equal Rights) is nothing short of the typical hypocritical and misogynistic behaviour typical of the Jamaican/dancehall masses … apparently the females never have and will never have any rights of men,” she wrote.

In the meantime Dr. Hope believes, “it will take time for the majority of men in Jamaica to come around but I believe things are evolving.”


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