Chapter

YouTube, Bad Bitches, and an M.I.C. (Mom-in-Chief)

Kyra D. Gaunt

in The Hip Hop & Obama Reader

Published in print December 2015 | ISBN: 9780199341801
Published online October 2015 | e-ISBN: 9780199355662 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199341801.003.0012
YouTube, Bad Bitches, and an M.I.C. (Mom-in-Chief)

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This chapter examines the impact of social media on girls and women in Michelle Obama’s America. While online spaces like YouTube have the potential to empower young girls and enable digital activism, the chapter documents how pornographic and sexist hip hop videos continue to socialize women into problematic gender roles. Explicit, uncensored “bad bitch” performances, it argues, dominate these online spaces owing to the economic profitability of acquiring multiple “views” and “likes.” Drawing on autoethnography, the chapter describes the similarities and differences between a hip hop generation girlhood of the 1970s and early 1980s and the gendered media space experienced by today’s hip hop millennials. Critical media literacy and mentorship, the chapter argues, is key for ensuring that young girls can take control of their real lives and digital identities.

Keywords: Barack Obama; hip hop; YouTube; Michelle Obama; social media; participatory democracy; media literacy; digital inequality; feminism; black girls

Chapter.  9258 words. 

Subjects: Popular Music

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