Blurred Lines: A feminist’s nightmare


Zion Douglass, Staff Writer

Robin Thicke’s “Blurred Lines” has been described by critics as the most popular song of the year, with some even saying it is the most popular song ever. Despite walking a thin line between fun/sexy and degrading/sexist, the song has steadily increased in popularity since its release on March 26, 2013. Regardless of it’s wide appeal, however, the song promotes rape culture directly through its lyrics and accompanying music video.

The first time I heard the song I was driving home from Six Flags. I thought the song was really catchy and cool, so when I got home I decided to listen to the song on a deeper level . After carefully listening to the lyrics I realized how outrageous and demeaning they were.

I’m not the only one who liked the song at first.

“I loved the song when I first heard it!” said junior John Francis Coates. Coates, however, believes there is nothing wrong with the lyrics in and of themselves.

The song first sparked controversy in the media when the lyrics were connected to statements made by rapists. “Project Unbreakable,” a blog made by rape survivor Grace Brown,reacts to the song by profiling rape and molestation survivors holding signs with quotes made by their rapists.

Many of the signs included lyrics in Robin Thicke’s song of the summer. “I know you want it” was featured over 10 times on the website, along with signs that say “You’re a good girl” and “You’re not even that sexy” which connects to the lyric “You’re far from plastic.”

Robin Thicke claims that he wrote the song about his wife, which is a reliable excuse for some. But, if the song was written about his wife, why does the music video make a point to have girls sexualizing themselves, rather than a more intimate music video expressing love for his wife?

A feminist group at the University of Auckland, the “Law Revue Girls”, decided to parody the song and music video. The parody, titled “Defined Lines” broke down the original gender roles in the song by using lyrics like “What you see on TV / Doesn’t speak equality / It’s straight up misogyny.” Youtube took down the song after it was posted because of its “Inappropriate sexual content.” Youtube taking down the video for this reason was extremely ironic, as in the “Blurred Lines” video features topless women prancing around praising Robin Thicke’s body. The “Blurred Lines” music video can be viewed with a Youtube account by a user that is over the age of 18, a barrier that can easily be broken.

“The song can be taken from different perspectives,” said Malia Brown. She also added,  “Music has always been degrading to women, but ‘Blurred Lines’ takes it too far.” After this song’s popularity and backlash, this may change the world of music. Artists may be more aware of their lyrics instead of carelessly writing and releasing songs that could spark dramatic controversy.