No Angel Analysis

1444 Words 6 Pages
No Angel: A Video Analysis

Arguably one of the best records on the eminently successful self-titled Beyonce album, the visual for No Angel highlights some of the key factors within this course that allow us to dissect the sophistication of Beyonce as not only a performer, but one of the most successful black females in American culture. No Angel is an intermission within the entire album - which predominately embodies themes of feminism and black sexuality, as well more inconspicuously racism - that allows for critique on Beyonce Knowles and her representation as an African American in a society where racism is one of the most dominant and highly discussed social issues. Although Beyonce has knowingly chosen to silence herself on political
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Throughout her career Beyonce Knowles, like many other celebrities, has affirmed a pride in her hometown of Third Ward, Houston where she grew up. However, it is made evident thirty seconds into the video that No Angel takes place in Fourth Ward, Houston - an area which is of lower economic ranking than that of Third Ward. It is important to take note of this as one of the bigger critiques is whether Beyonce upholds this false persona of coming out of the gutter, when in reality she was born into a well off, middle-class upbringing. This again reinforces stereotypes surrounding African Americans and their presumable relation to poverty and lower-class upbringings. We are given a Beyonce willingly plays on these stereotypes throughout her career in strategic ways that lead to her benefit. These stereotypes are again reinforced throughout the ‘black hip-hop culture’ that is so evident within the entire visual. The various black males, showing off their grills, cold chains, along with their screw-face/eye-glare heavy facial expressions gives off the preconceived aggressive black male ideologies. In contrast, …show more content…
Although we can conclude that to have such luxurious cars within a low class community would be the result of illegal activity - just doing so is practising in the prejudice. Even the black females within this video have been characterized as strippers, mothers with multiple children perhaps - This is a prime example of just how normative these stereotypical beliefs have become in society. If these subtle symbolisms weren 't enough to establish the black hip hop culture within The Houston Ward’s, No Angel has also included special appearances from symbolic figures within the black hip hop community, such as Bun B, Scarface, Will D, and Z-Ro; These individuals are some of Houston’s biggest hip-hop legends (Soderberg, noisy.vice.com). Including these figures within her video gives off the association of talented african americans that come up out of “the hood” and go on to live the American Dream. Although Beyonce did not actual live this reality, getting out of the hood is a story she strategically links herself with. This is seen in this video and throughout her career. As mentioned before, embodying this reality as her own, Beyonce reinforces the idea that African Americans are

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