Lana Del Rey sparked immediate backlash after sharing a rant on Instagram, in which she lashes out at her critics and references several other solo female singers.
“Question for the culture: Now that Doja Cat, Ariana [Grande], Camila [Cabello], Cardi B, Kehlani and Nicki Minaj and Beyonce have had number ones with songs about being sexy, wearing no clothes, [expletive], cheating etc — can I please go back to singing about being embodied, feeling beautiful by being in love even if the relationship is not perfect, or dancing for money — or whatever I want — without being crucified or saying that I’m glamourizing abuse?”
Del Rey seemed to imply that the other female artists mentioned had not had their share of critics.
Social media users questioned why the majority of the artists Del Rey named, with the exception of Grande, are women of colour; additionally questioned was Del Rey’s usage the term “for the culture,” which is often used in reference to black artists and other artists of colour.
Others pointed to the fact that Del Rey’s primary demographic of critics was not addressed in the letter. Kehlani, who Del Rey included in her list, has not had a number one song.
“I’m fed up with female writers and alt singers saying that I glamorize abuse when in reality I’m just a glamorous person singing about the realities of what we are all now seeing are very prevalent emotionally abusive relationships all over the world,” wrote Del Rey.
“Over the last ten years I think it’s pathetic that my minor lyrical exploration detailing my sometimes submissive or passive roles in my relationships has often made people say I’ve set women back hundreds of years.”
She added that she was “not not a feminist” but that “there has to be a place in feminism for women who look and act like me — the kind of woman who says no but men hear yes — the kind of women who are slated mercilessly for being their authentic, delicate selves, the kind of women who get their own stories and voices taken away from by stronger women or by men who hate women.”
Del Rey expressed the feeling of having “paved the way” for other women to stop faking happiness and “say whatever the hell they wanted to in their music.”
A Twitter user posted: “Isn’t Lana more comparable with say Florence [Welch]? Definitely not Beyonce, they don’t exist in the same space. Why is she trying to insert herself into the ‘culture’?”
“Lana Del Rey saying ‘there has to be a place in feminism for women who look and act like me’ while singling out multiple women of colour as having advantage over her, as if they’re not also ‘slated mercilessly’, is peak white feminism,” another user wrote.
Del Rey said she would detail more of her feelings in her upcoming two poetry books and that she would be making “personal reparations” by donating proceeds to Native American foundations of her choice.
Further, she announced that her new album would release on September 5.