Björk Calls Out Media’s Treatment Of Women Performers In Open Letter
“Eat your Bechdel test heart out.”
Björk has officially had it with 2016. The Icelandic singer posted an open letter Wednesday, in which she criticized the way the media represents female artists. Björk, who’s primarily known for her soaring brand of art-pop, was heavily criticized after a DJ gig at Houston's Day for Night festival left some feeling that she hadn't delivered. The singer was slammed by critics for “not performing” and “‘hiding’ behind desks,” a complaint she says was not aimed at her male counterparts.
"Women in music are allowed to be singer songwriters singing about their boyfriends,” Björk wrote in the letter. “If they change the subject matter to atoms, galaxies, activism, nerdy math beat editing, or anything else [other] than being performers singing about their loved ones they get criticized."
Björk argued that if female performers don't "cut our chest open and bleed about the men and children in our lives," they're chastised. The same rule, however, doesn't apply to their male counterparts, Björk added. "Men are allowed to go from subject to subject, do sci-fi, period pieces, be slapstick and humorous, be music nerds getting lost in sculpting soundscapes, but not women,” she explained. “If we don't cut our chest open and bleed about the men and children in our lives, we are cheating our audience, eat your Bechdel test heart out.”
Björk ended her impassioned letter with a call for empowerment and a pledge to make next year different from the one that came before it. “Let’s make 2017 the year where we fully make the transformation!!!" she wrote. "The right to variety for all the girls out there!!!”
Read the full letter below.