Chrissie Hynde has spoken out about the sexualised image of modern pop music.
The Pretenders singer came under fire recently after seeming to suggest that it is a rape victim’s fault if they are attacked if they are “putting it about and being provocative”, later describing her views as “common sense”. These are among a number of controversial comments the singer made.
Hynde appeared on BBC Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour on Tuesday (September 8), in which she said, “I don’t think sexual assault is a gender issue as such. I think it’s very much all around us now.”
She continued to hit out at pop stars that “call themselves feminists” despite what she sees as contradictory actions.
“It’s provoked by this pornography culture, it’s provoked by pop stars who call themselves feminists,” Hynde added. “Maybe they’re feminists on behalf of prostitutes – but they are no feminists on behalf of music, if they are selling their music by bumping and grinding and wearing their underwear in videos. That’s a kind of feminism – but, you know, you’re a sex worker is what you are.”
Listen to the full interview at the BBC website.
In her new book Reckless: My Life As A Pretender, Hynde recalls an incident of sexual abuse she experienced when she was 21. Detailing the event, which saw members of a motorcycle gang rape her in an abandoned house, she wrote: “Now let me assure you that, technically speaking, however you want to look at it, this was all my doing and I take full responsibility… You can’t fuck about with people, especially people who wear ‘I heart rape’ and ‘on your knees’ badges.”
Speaking to The Sunday Times about the passage in the book, she said: “If I’m walking around and I’m very modestly dressed and I’m keeping to myself and someone attacks me, then I’d say that’s [the attacker’s] fault. But if I’m being very lairy and putting it about and being provocative, then you are enticing someone who is already unhinged – don’t do that. Come on! That’s just common sense.”
When The Washington Post read back her comments to her, Hyde responded: “Sounds like common sense… If you don’t want my opinion, don’t ask me for it.”