Perfect Pairs: Books & Music Videos
All the Good Girls Go to Hell by Billie Eilish
Although the title and some of the lyrics may suggest otherwise, this song is actually about climate change and the environment. This hauntingly beautiful video shows some of the ways that humans have destroyed the environment and the lyrics itself is a wake up call that we have to start taking matters into our own hands instead of waiting for someone else to do it for us, in this case, God. Both Billie Eilish and Greta Thunberg present us a slap to the face that we need to re-think the ways we are affecting the planet and start to change before we destroy Mother Nature to the point of no return.
Nightmare by Halsey
Honestly, every time I watch this music video, I get goosebumps and a surge in confidence and how being a woman is badass. This music video screams women empowerment and is a strong protest against the discrimination of women. From the dark and heavy music to the aggressive yet elegant visuals, Halsey rejects the stereotypical expectations of being a woman and mocks them in her lyrics. This definitely pairs perfectly with Solnit’s Recollections of My Non-Existence where she faced the epidemic of violence against women but was also liberated by the growing culture of activism at that time. Just like Solnit, Halsey has faced harassment and has spoken out about it in her Women’s March speech in 2018. These two empowering feminists remind us that women deserve better than how society has been and still is treating us and that we should continue the fight for those who can’t.
Till It Happens To You by Lady Gaga
Warning: Graphic depictions of sexual assault. If you are uncomfortable, please do not watch it.
With this video, there really is no beating around the bush to address the normalised sexual assault against women in society -- how survivors are afraid to speak up about it (due to victim shaming, fear of injustice, etc.) and the mental turmoil they face everyday since. One book that comes to mind is definitely Chanel Miller’s memoir, where she reclaims her identity to tell her story. Miller not only illuminates a culture biased to protect perpetrators, the criminal “justice” system designed to fail the most vulnerable, but also the courage to move through the suffering and live a full and beautiful life. Let Gaga’s song and Miller’s book be the drive for change.
Modern Loneliness by Lauv
Although ‘Modern Loneliness’ was released before quarantine, its official music video was only released a month ago, depicting the use of social media and the internet to connect with the world during this pandemic. When I first listened to this song and watched the video, it really hit home. I’m sure a lot of people can relate to this. Although social media has helped us connect with people around the world, it has also made us distance ourselves from people around us. We rely on likes, comments, followers and idols to temporarily ease our insecurities instead of actually working on the issues we face. Internet life blurs with real life and we forget that we are human beings with feelings. Feeling really emotional after listening to this song, I could only think of Notes on a Nervous Planet where Haig helps us navigate the world in this age to realise the positive and negative impacts current situations have on our mental health. He examines everything from social media to awareness of our own mind and body so we could start our journey towards happiness. Remember to take care of yourself, do things that make YOU happy, and check up on your friends and family.