CA3 - Bolt

Philip Allebach
English 101
Dr. Delsandro
April 29, 2013
Britney Spears Womanizer
Hip Hop and Pop music is an extremely popular type of music today. It may be
consumed as an innocent choice of music for leisure, or at a party. Although this music is very
popular it portrays misconceptions of gender and sexuality on Americans in a negative way.
These misconceptions are created by the male dominance in the field of music videos. In the
music video culture women have very few roles. These few roles women have are fallowing
stereotypical gender roles social scripts and sexuality. While showing off their sexuality women
take part in sexual acts, nudity and other explicated behavior to simply please men. These
misconceptions can be seen in both male and female artists’ music videos in both Hip Hop and
Pop music.
One may think these stereotypical gender roles and other explicated behavior by women
can only be seen music videos performed by male artist. These misconceptions can be seen in
female’s artist music videos such as Britney Spears. Britney Spears song womanizer came out in
2008 and reached the top of music charts all over the world. Along with the song being popular,
the music video has over 97 million views on YouTube. At first glance the music video along
with the lyrics suggest Britney is being revolutionary and getting revenge on a male who is a
womanizer, but with further analysis of the videos suggest women are the reason men womanize.
This video along with many other videos suggest women must use sexuality and fallow certain
stereotypical gender roles to get the attention of men.
Throughout the video Britney Spears is dressed in different scandalous outfits and taking
part in actions to seduce the man who is a womanizer. The lyrics of this song make it seems
Britney Spears is trying to get revenge on a man, but the video suggest something different. To
get revenge Britney used her sexuality and fallows stereotypical gender roles to create
misconceptions on how women are expected to behave.
The first example of these gender roles can be seen within the first few seconds of the
video. The lyrics to the song during this scene state “You can play brand new to all the other
chicks out here But I know what you are, what you are, baby.” These lyrics possibly show
Britney has figured out that her man is a womanizer and wants to punish him for his womanizing
by seducing him. The video portrays a different meaning then the lyrics. In scene Britney is in
the kitchen making breakfast for the man. Both are still not dressed suggesting the two had
sexual relationship the night before. Not only is Britney fallowing the gender role of cooking
breakfast for a man but she is also barefoot in the kitchen. This supports the old saying about
women being “pregnant and barefoot in the kitchen”. Although Britney is not pregnant she is
fallowing the saying by being barefoot in the kitchen. Just the actions in the first few seconds of
the scene show how music videos portray misconceptions using women stereotypes and gender
Along with making breakfast for the man and being barefoot in the kitchen Britney uses
her sexuality the attention of the man. The way Britney is dressed in a purple skimpy robe that
exposes much of her body. The rob only goes down to her thighs, and does not cover her arms.
Britney has on a black bra under her rob and showing off cleavage. Although Britney’s outfit is
reveling she is puckered up and her makeup is done nicely. It is early in the morning and the man
is still in his underwear but Britney has found the time to do her makeup done nicely. This scene
supports Naomi Wolf claim in the Beauty Myth. The claim states “women work hard- twice as
hard as men” (Wolf 22). Britney fallows this claim because she has gotten up, did her makeup,
and made breakfast before the man has gotten out of his underwear. Although this is a short
twelve second clip it portrays many misconceptions. Britney Spears used sexuality, stereotypes,
and gender roles to get attention from the man. These misconceptions are not just in the first
girlfriend scene. Britney uses sexuality in other scenes to gain attention of the men throughout
the whole video.
The second scene of the video takes place in a working atmosphere. Throughout the
scene Britney uses many tactics to lead the man on in the business office only to push him away.
In the first scene, Britney is dressed very scandalous. She is wearing a seductive, tight outfit with
a large necklace around her neck drawing attention to her breast. She also has black glasses on
with high heels and red lip stick. In the office there are several women working but Britney is
getting the most attention from the men. This fallows what Naomi Wolf says in her book the
Beauty Myth. The claim states “the fixation on “beauty” of the 1980s was a direct consequence
of, and a one-to-one check and balance, upon the entry of women into powerful positions” (Wolf
33). The claim is saying that more attractiveness of a woman is equated with more power in the
business world and this statement can be seen in the video. The office is filled with men, but the
Britney is portrayed as the dominant force. The men lift Britney on their shoulders as if she is
royalty but when in reality she is just a secretary. The music video supports Wolf claim because
Britney uses her sexuality and looks get gain power in the business and to get attention from the
Not only does Britney’s attire help to seduce the man but her actions in the office play a
large role in seducing the man she hopes to get revenge on. Britney dances around the office
flaunting her body at him, whispering in his ear and pretends to give the man a lab dance.
Britney is using sexuality in both her physical attire and her action to get attention from the
business men working in the office. Britney also gains power in the business world through her
Britney uses her looks and her actions to seduce the man again in the waitress scene.
Britney portrays a different type of women then in the other scenes. Her outfit consists of a
leather vest revealing her waist, skin tight leather pants and flashy jewelry. Her hair dyed red,
with dark eye makeup and tattoos covering her arms. This outfit in this scene gives off a “bad
girl” type persona. Much like the other scenes Britney used her sexuality to get attention from
the man. She climes on top of the man, pulls on his tie and whispers her hair back and forth for
attention. Again in this scene she uses sexuality to get the man’s attention in hope of seducing
People may think this one video is just one single example on how music videos portray
the misconception that women need to use sexuality to get the attention of men. Most music
videos portray misconceptions and can be dangerous because many people consume videos. Gail
Dines states in Porn Land that “what is of interest is not necessarily the overt message of one
particular image but the cumulative effect of the sub textual theses found in the system of
images, which together create a particular way of looking at the world” (Dines 81-81) She
continues and gives an example that states, “one fashion advertisement may not be that
influential in itself, but add up the hundreds of fashion ads that we encounter daily, and you
begin to hear a particular story about women’s bodies, felinity and consumerism” (Dines 81-81).
What Dines states are parallel with music videos in today’s culture. One single music video does
not affect society but may music videos have a large impact on society. These videos create
unrealistic expectations and misconceptions of how women should dress and act. These
impractical expectations corrupt the ideas and culture in a negative way.
In conclusion, the lyrics to the song womanizer suggest this song is a rebellious anthem
for women. With further evaluation this song is the complete opposite because Britney uses
stereotypes to get attention of the man. Throughout the video Britney uses her sexuality and
explicit movements in hope of getting attention from the man she wants to seduce. She also uses
stereotypical gender roles and social scripts such as serving. This single video does not affect
society, but with many music videos like this one create a misconception of women. This video
along with many others create a misconception that women need to use their sexuality and use
other stereotypical gender roles to get attention of men.
Works Cited
Dines, Gail. Pornland: How Porn Has Hijacked Our Sexuality. Boston: Beacon, 2010.
Wolf, Naomi. The Beauty Myth. New York: William Morrow and Company, 1991. Print.
Britney Spears. “Womanizer.” Circus. Jive Records, 2008. Music Video.
Dreamworlds 3. Dir. Sut Jhally. Media Education Foundation, 2007. DVD. Media
Education Foundation, 2007.