Lily Allen defends her new music video against racist claims
18 November 2013, 08:30
London - Lily Allen has defended her Hard Out Here music video.
The 28-year-old singer has hit out at accusations of racism in her new raunchy video - which sees a group of black women jiggling their bottoms - by saying she chose her backing dancers through their talent, not based on their skin colour.
For The Gaurdian, Suzanne Moore writes that Lily is putting herself above that of her black dancers. "I like Allen's voice and presence and mouthiness, but I don't like racism. Even tongue-in-cheek, hand-on-slapped-black-buttocks racism.
"In the video she walks away from her twerking dancers. She remains in charge. They don't. Maybe I have read it wrong. But what I see is the black female body, anonymous and sexualised, grinding away to make the rent."
In Ayesha A. Siddiqi's piece on Noisey, she writes that Lily is taking aim at the dancers. "The non-white women in Allen’s video act as dehumanised proxies of patriarchy—assumed to have neither brains nor agency—with Allen aiming all her contempt at them sideways."
"As long as white womens’ empowerment requires lowering everyone else their 'feminism' is just rebranded white supremacy. Allen sings, 'there’s a glass ceiling to break' her video indicates it’s only herself she wishes on the other side, " writes Siddiqi.
Taking to Twitter on Wednesday the singer said: "If anyone thinks for a second that I requested specific ethnicities for the video, they're wrong."
"If anyone thinks that after asking the girls to audition, I was going to send any of them away because of the colour of their skin, they're wrong."
She added: "I'm not going to apologise because I think that would imply that I'm guilty of something, but I promise you this, in no way do I feel superior to anyone, except paedophiles, rapists murderers etc, and I would not only be surprised but deeply saddened if I thought anyone came away from that video feeling taken advantage of, or compromised in any way."
The video for the catchy track sees Lily - who has had two children, 23 month old Ethel and 10-month-old Marnie in recent years - undergo liposuction at the behest of her manager in order to look thin and glamorous after her four-year hiatus from the music scene.
Elsewhere in the clip, the singer mocks distasteful music and also appears to poke fun at singer Miley Cyrus as she attempts to twerk.