Beyoncé: Identity, Stereotypes and Cultural Roots of a Southern Diva
Sadeka Sabrina Haque
Black identity has always been the acknowledgement of a common history that generated the sense of African-American uniqueness along with the stereotyping notions. My focus will be the issue of the African-American identity as it has been evolved through the years, as well as racial and gender ideologies that formed this identity. And Beyoncé the singing Diva of the American South pompously conforms to these ideologies. The focal point of this paper is based on the construct “Beyoncé,” the persona that has been created in terms of Southern perspective and history. A distinctive part of the American history, the American South, expanding geographically and temporally, has become more of a notion than just a region; in these terms, it is necessary to recognize the African-American contribution as vital for the existence of the diverse Southern culture and the profound historical past. This paper will analyze that Beyoncé has been a significant persona not only within concepts of music with her transition from superstar to icon but also as a symbol of past and present African-American heritage; it is reasonable to assume that the singer is the South incarnate, since the trajectory of the black culture is reflected upon and further reinforced by her presence. Like the Southern mentality, the diva embraces the myths of the black body and through her lyrics, music and image sustains their existence. In terms of identity, she carries the black power that pays tribute to the Southern history of early oppression and later segregation in an attempt to identify her black “self” as unique and unified at the same time.
Southern Diva, Beyoncé: Identity
Sadeka Sabrina Haque is Lecturer in the Department of English, Jahangirnagar University, Dhaka, Bangladesh. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org