What’s up with all these goddamn White rappers winning more awards than black rappers?
That’s the question White music critic Chris Richards tries to answer in his analysis of the phenomenon that is Iggy Azalea.
Never heard of her? Consider yourself lucky.
Azalea is a blonde-haired, Aussie-born rapper who has miraculously transformed herself into a black woman with a White skin. Her music is god-awful and her very existence represents the pinnacle of cultural Kali-Yuga.
She’s most famous for “Fancy,” but the full brunt of her degradation can be experienced in the music video for “Work”:
Her popularity alone is a searing indictment of the society we live in. Even worse, the music establishment found quality in it and awarded her Grammy nominations. Richards does agree that her music is terrible—albeit, from a perspective entirely different from ours. However, the real problem he has with Iggy is that she is a White “colonizer” of a black art form. For this critic, the marketplace is unfairly placing White performers over authentic black ones. He takes his fury out on the consumer that contributes to this prejudiced system:
That supply-demand-chicken-egg mystery will always fog the intersection of art and commerce, so here’s a tidy way to think about this particular moment in pop history: If “Fancy” is the only hip-hop single you purchased last year, you’re an unwitting participant in a tacitly racist marketplace that will not change what it’s selling until we all change what we’re buying.
Yes, audiences will always harbor a desire to see themselves reflected in the music they consume, but the greatest art should also nurture our empathy. It should encourage us to connect with the humanity of experiences separate from our own. We should always be making room for those kinds of experiences — especially when we’re picking winners.
What Richards fails to take into account is that the majority of America is still White, and those people would like still like to “see themselves reflected in the music they consume.” It’s very hard to rail against the inherent nature of capitalism from your sheltered perch at the Washington Post and demand the average American to be less racist in their tastes.
What this reveals is a crack in the universal desire for monoculture. America’s chattering class is very insistent that everyone in this country mix, mingle, and amalgamate—but get furious when the natural product of that tops the pop charts. Iggy Azalea is the Frankenstein Monster of monoculture. A White woman doing her best to be black (even exclusively dating black dudes) and forgoing her own race for that of another should be celebrated by these fools. If race is a social construct, who’s to say Ms. Azalea isn’t black? And isn’t it grand that a White woman would degrade herself in such a way, all thanks to a culture heavily promoted to every part of the world Whites inhabit?
You would think she would cut the perfect hero for postmodern America. But the postmodernists refuse to crown her. These very same elites who jizz all over National Geographic’s “Faces of 2050” are horrified by the abysmal quality of the culture those faces would produce. But they can’t have their cake and eat it, too. The “black urbanity” that served as the incubator for rap can no longer compete with the more commercially-appealing sounds produced by the likes of Azalea. The same free market that has trampled the traditional culture of Europe will also relegate “authentic” rap to a ghetto of another kind.
That’s the reality of monoculture though. It’s also the nature of our current free market. If our society has spent years encouraging the denizens of this state to enjoy the worst garbage imaginable and to “open up their ears” to foreign sounds, Azalea is the natural result. A multiracial America will ignore Miles Davis and Public Enemy in favor of Ke$ha and Miley Cyrus.
If you want genuine artistic expressions of quality, demand an ethnostate. Otherwise, enjoy the next monstrosity coming to your radio dial.