Response Post: The King & Queen of Music
Olivia Kang

Beyoncé is Not Sacred…to Me

I agree with Olivia Kang when she states that she would not consider Jay-Z and Beyoncé as a God or Goddess. Many people refer to Jay-Z and Beyoncé as the King and Queen of hip-hop. This royal title may allude to their power and wealth, but it does not make them sacred.

In Chris Klassen’s Religion and Pop Culture; A Cultural Studies Approach, Klassen discusses the Leavisites who differentiated between folk culture and high culture. High culture was non-profit and maintained by the wealthy. It was not driven by market-demand and it was certainly not commercial. Beyoncé and Jay-Z are absolutely driven by market demand. They are a marketing machine. If Beyoncé gained 50 pounds or Jay-Z began rapping about gardening and recipes, their star power would plummet.

Bey claims she is a feminist. But many feminists stand for just the opposite of the sexuality that Bey promotes. This article is written by a woman who insists that Beyoncé will never be a role model for her young daughter.

Beyoncé has said many times, at awards show or in interviews, that it takes a village to get her ready, teach her choreography, make her songs go platinum. Yes, there is no doubt she works hard, but she is not the only driving force in Beyism. This blog on hegemony in Hollywood provides a great example that the artist or actor we love, isn’t always so in control of their career.

If you look at it from a hegemonistic point of view, there is someone at the top, controlling what these two are doing, saying, looking like, etc. I would argue that whoever this person is that is controlling their puppet strings, has more reason to be considered a “God” than either Beyoncé or Jay-Z themselves.

Hollywood actor Kerry Washington received backlash because she questioned Beyoncé’s stance on feminism and being a role model. She argued that Bey was not a good role model for young black women. This clip demonstrates how many people came to Bey’s defense against Kerry Washington by claiming she is the ‘pot calling the kettle black’.

Fandom is certainly a large aspect of Jay and Bey’s success. As Jennifer Porter argues in Implicit Religion in Popular Culture: The Religious Dimensions of Fan Communities, authentic fakes are ever present, especially in Hollywood. Porter argues that “Pop culture, in contrast, is not “intended”
(by and large) by its creators to act as a source for spiritual inspiration.” (Porter, 275). However, many women would argue that Bey does inspire them. Is this a religious type of inspiration? Porter believes that real religion and authentic fakes have a fine line that separates them. I don’t believe Beyoncé is sacred however I can see how someone may follow the religion of Beyoncé.

As far as Olivia stating that she is just as big a fan of Beyoncé as Jennifer Lawrence is, I can agree to disagree!

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