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October 15, 2015

A retrospective take on Sir Mix-a-Lot's 1992 smash hit and hip-hop classic, "Baby Got Back." This critique engages the nuanced importance of this song in laying the foundation of the Body Positive movement through the emcee's admiration of curvy feminine figures during a time of gangsta rap objectification and narrow definitions of beauty.

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In “Baby Got Back,” one-hit wonder rapper and buttocks connoisseur, Sir Mix-a-Lot finds a strikingly blunt manner in which to address the male hormonal appreciation for the curvy female figure. During the time of its release, critics erroneously dismissed the song as objectifying,reducing women to two slabs of meat attached intrinsically adjacent to the tailbone. Merely typecasting this song amongst the litany of hip-hop hits that mitigate women to sexualized objects is just simply pettifogging the seemingly surface-level misogyny that appears to only the untrained, unrefined gutter-pallet of an ear. “I’m tired of magazines/ Sayin’ flat butts are the thing” is symbolic of the quintessential precursor to the Body Positive movement that has shed light on the daily conundrums that American women dauntingly face when aspiring to unrealistic beauty standards. “I like big butts and I cannot lie,” is not just a shameless, perverted and depraved admiration of the overtly rotund behind, it is a display of changing cultural attitudes toward the mutually shared veneration of diverse body shapes. “Baby Got Back” is a seminal stand to the imposition of the fashion industry that places an unruly emphasis on Photoshopped beauty and Skeletor-esque figures. Its impact on feminine aesthetics should be revered and reveled as an expression of shattering traditional beauty standards. A retrospective take on this hip-hop masterpiece should now serve as an anthem to bodacious, voluptuous bootylicious women everywhere.