It is difficult, being a self-confessed feminist in the public eye - half-assed or no. Because feminists often feel like they have to take what they can get celebrity or public figure-wise and therefore expect famous feminists to adhere to their own personal form of feminism.
Usually I kind of roll my eyes at the reaction to Beyonce's 'feminist fails.' I for one would want Beyonce on my team, but it is a habit of feminism to say who can and who can't be feminist. However I noticed in my e-mail inbox today that my Google Alert for 'feminism' that there were two contrasting articles on Beyonce and her surprise album.
Is this amount of scrutiny helpful? You know what? Yes.
The Huffington Post article by the Real Colored Girls is more critical. Bringing up how Jay Z's appearance on a Beyonce track rapping about how he's like Ike Turner is problematic at best. "we're concerned that the capitalist ethics of mainstream hip hop has seduced feminist allies into flirting with bottom bitch feminism in their silencing of those who would critique Bey and the systemic violence she represents."
Rather than concern themselves with Beyonce's wardrobe the writers examine her husband's contribution to her work and why they are troubled by Beyonce's place as a role model for black feminists: "As womanists and black feminists, we have a responsibility to bring it with our cultural work which we will infuse, at all times, with an ethic of care and responsibility."
Is this amount of scrutiny helpful? You know what? Yes. It's good to question everything. However Miley Cyrus, while receiving flack for saying she was one of the: "biggest feminists in the world" and Lily Allen do not seem to receive the same level of disappointed scrutiny. Question it.