Mansplanation of the Week: Keith Urban’s “Female”

By Haley Verre

Staff Writer

In a time when a number of powerful men in the entertainment industry are being called out for sexual abuse, it is important for people with privilege and celebrity status to speak out against perpetrators.

Source: A&E’s Biography

Country singer Keith Urban recently released a single called “Female,” in which he addresses problems with victim-blaming and the way women are often misrepresented.

Some feminists via social media are applauding Urban for taking a stand against harmful stereotypes, others felt that he was “mansplaining.”

Urban almost paints himself as an expert in the everyday challenges of being a woman, which he cannot even begin to understand.

The song repeats that women are mothers, daughters, and sisters. This is nice and all, but it fails to portray women as valuable outside of the context of their relationship to men.

His use of the word “female” to describe women is also problematic in that it dehumanizes women and reduces them to the bare minimum: vehicles of reproduction.

The term “female” is more of an adjective, so referring to women in this way makes no sense anyway. Female what? Humans? Dogs? Monkies?

I appreciate Urban attempting to challenge harmful stereotypes because other men are more likely to listen to him than they are a woman in the music industry. While he has good intentions, his song is ultimately ignorant and only scratches the surface of the oppression women have suffered for years.