Are females exploited by the music industry?

Robin Thicke and Miley Cyrus performing at the 2013 VMA's.

Robin Thicke and Miley Cyrus performing at the 2013 VMA’s.

It is a well-known fact that the music industry’s sole purpose is to generate one thing and one thing only, and it is not music.

Music is merely the by-product of the industry’s ravaging thirst to generate money. An industry whereby female sexuality – and sexuality in general – is one of the tools that the industry uses to increase potential profits. However, to say that females are exploited by the industry is a step to far.

Exploitation is the unruly use of a person or a group of people in a cruel and unjust manner

The vast majority of females who are “exploited” by the music industry receive (quite handsome remunerations for their services.

Just like in advertising, the music industry employs the idea that “sex sells”. Miley Cyrus is not the first, nor will she be the last female artist to use her sexuality, her figure or her desirability in an attempt to increase her profile within celebrity culture.

Cyrus is merely just the newest recruit to enlist into the sexuality culture to which the music industry has adopted – not created.

Men find women desirable, women find other women desirable. These human elements are used to help generate profit in whatever manner possible.

In 1981, Duran Duran hired female actresses to wrestle one another in mud, topless, in the video for ‘Girls on Film’.

Madonna has been infamous for her use of sexuality throughout her music career – be it in her music videos or during her stage performances.

The use of sexuality is not confined to just female artists.

The gesture of crotch-grabbing is synonymous which Michael Jackson, while R’n’B artist D’Angelo starred completely naked, and oiled, in his video “Untitled (How Does It Feel)”.

Females are not portrayed favourably in some sections of the music industry – especially in hip-hop or rap –  there is a strong case to claim that there is a high levels of misogyny in the aforementioned genres of music, but the females are not exploited. They are paid. If they are comfortable with flaunting what god gave them for the world to see in music videos, or gyrate in a sexual manner, that is their prerogative as professional female adults earning a living.

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