Wednesday 15 June 2016
Since its emergence during the late 1960s, heavy metal has always been a male dominated genre. While there are many musical variations – from black metal to nu-metal, grindcore to goth – rebellion, death, destruction, sex and violence are recurring lyrical themes.
The objectification and sexualisation of women in extreme metal music, and their portrayal through lyrics, art work, videos and song titles, was the subject of a keynote lecture delivered last week by Jasmine Shadrack, Senior Lecture in Popular Music.
Jasmine delivered a paper entitled: ‘Get Over It: women extreme metal performers and the hegemonic response’, at Bournemouth University’s Metal Conference; an annual event organised by The International Society of Metal Studies. The one day conference attracted attendees from around the world.
Jasmine explained: “I was invited to take part in the conference by Bournemouth University’s Dr Heather Savigny, an Associate Professor in Politics and Gender. My paper examined a number of extreme metal bands, their representation and engagement with women and how misogynist they were, and then finished by examining my own extreme metal performance as a site for empowerment.”
When she is not teaching students musical performance, musicological and cultural theory, Jasmine’s research areas and publications are concerned with Feminism, space, music and performativity. Her PhD is on women in Extreme Metal, and as part of her working research practice she is the guitarist/ front woman of ‘Denigrata’, an avant-garde Black Metal band. Denigrata’s first music video is online here.