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Readers Respond: What's Your Favorite Female Anthem?

Responses: 17

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The most widely-recognized female anthem is something of an old-school feminist relic -- Helen Reddy's 1972 hit 'I Am Woman.' So what are women listening to today? Are there other female anthems that have touched your life and made a difference? Do you have songs that were meaningful to you on certain occasions or in specific situations -- songs that have gotten you through hard times or inspired you to change and grow? Share your favorites here, and explain why you believe they've earned the title of 'female anthem' and what category they might best fit into.

Superwoman, Girl on Fire, Alicia Keys.

Still put on a vest with an s on my chest. O yes! Awesome song.
—Guest B

Bossy

Bossy by Kelis is a good one; Destiny's Child's Lose my Breath
—Guest Erica

girlpower anthem

I'm the one by Mary J...I feel powerful and can run that extra mile
—Guest LeggyPeggy

Why has everyone forgot CHAKA kHAN

IM EVERY WOMAN ITS ALL IN ME! ANYTHING YOU WANT DONE BABY I DO IT NATURALLY!
—Guest Lyricaljunkie

Can't believe Aretha wasn't mentioned

"R.E.S.P.E.C.T." by Aretha Franklin. The song was mentioned in passing, but not acknowledged as a great female anthem. Another is "Express Yourself" by Madonna. I also concur with Anouk regarding "It's Raining Men" and "I Will Survive"
—Guest Elaine

Best feminist songs by MEN!!

Jaheim's "Put That Woman First;" Ne-Yo's "One in a Million" and "Miss Independent;" Webbie's "INDEPENDENT;" Joe's "What if (a Woman);" Raheem Devaughn's "Woman;" Musiq Soulchild's "Yes," "Just Friends" and "Don't Change;" Calvin Richardson with Angie Stone: "More than a Woman;" Eric Benet & Jill Scott's "One Time;" Shaggy and Barrington Levy's "Full Control" & with the Pussycat Dolls: "Don't Ask Her That;" Tupac's "Keep Your Head Up;" Ludacris's "Runaway Love" (yes I know the last two men do also have misogynistic songs, but the feminist ones reach a very male-supremacist subculture and can change society in a very profound way, by sexist men being leaders in advancing women's rights in a subculture that advocates suppressing them), and finally, Bow Wow's "Big Girls," which disses skinny women and makes fat women seem sexy and appealing!
—Guest Arielle Karp

Destiny's Child (wish I had more space)!

Beyonce is good by herself, but BETTER in a group!! Some of the BEST "ladies anthem" songs are two Destiny's Child songs, "Survivor" and "Independent Women" (Pt. II)!! Although Beyonce by herself had great songs as well: "Me, Myself and I," "Hey Ladies" & "Girl. Other great feminist songs include Salt 'n Pepa: "Ain't Nothin But a She Thang; Christina Aguilera's (& Lil' Kims'): "Can't Hold Us Down" (which was inspired by Eminem, just like Mariah Carey's "Obsessed"), and "Fighter," "Voice Within" and "Beautiful;" India Arie's "Video;" Alicia Keyes' "A Woman's Worth;" " Blaque: "I'm Good;" Kristinia DeBarge: "Powerless;" Keyshia Cole:' "I've Changed My Mind," "Should've Let You Go" & "Some Other Place;" Fantasia's "I'm Doing Me," Gemma Fox and MC Lyte's "Gone;" Eve's "Love is Blind," Queen Latifah/Chicago soundtrack's "He Had it Coming;" Teairra Marie: "Stay In Ya Lane;" Keri Hilson: "Self Made"& "How Does it Feel;" Danity Kane: "Talkin Bout Himself;" & Cheetah Girls' "Cinderella" !!!!
—Guest Arielle Karp

female anthem

skyscraper by demi lovato is my favorite female anthem
—Guest eve

Female anthems that make me happy

I always enjoy to listening to (and singing along with) "It's Raining Men" by the Weather Girls and "I Will Survive" by Gloria Gaynor. Those are the great classics for me!
—Guest Anouk

Listen by Beyonce

Listen by Beyonce is my absolute favorite do your own thing "female anthem".
—Guest Kelli

By Far the Greatest...

"I Belong to Me" by Jessica Simpson resonates with me the most! Why should a woman need just any relationship to complete her? Hold out for the one that meets all of your criteria!!
—Guest Twinkie2

Anthems

I would have to say "King of Anything" by Sarah Bareilles, "Listen" and "Irreplaceable" by Beyonce, "Mentira" by Yuridia, "Foundations"by Kate Nash, etc. All angry songs from women tired of dealing with men who think they're on top of the world and just know you can't do better.
—Guest Dia

joyful anthems

One of my favorite anthems celebrates the power and joy of girlhood, and young womanhood. "Girls just want to have fun" by Cyndie Lauper. It's been an anthem of mine since college. I think it encourages young women to assert their right to enjoy life and freely express their exuberance.
—labelledominique

Anthem by and for Women

"I run for Life" by Melissa Etheridge. This song really captures how women support other women, because we have a common understanding of issues like breast cancer that take women out of families. And of course, it's based on Melissa's personal experience, so it's a very powerful track.
—Guest Schnee

Female Anthem

My musical world is somewhat skewed toward camp songs and sing-along ditties. I rely on the oldies. Long Before R.E.S.P.E C.T the celebration song, "She'll be Coming Round the Mountain" is a clarion call, affirming capabilities and expectations of behaviors acknowleging HER power, capabilities and the respect engendered by HER presence.
—Guest Betsy Spaulding

"Single Ladies" isn't a female anthem

We, as a music loving couple, are disgusted with the overwhelming response to Beyonce's "Single Ladies" (and others)... a description of SHALLOW for most of her lyrics is insufficient, and it's not even good tunes. True, Beyonce is a lovely girl -- with an impressive voice when applied, and only SOMETIMES the wardrobes are of good design. OK she has the world's attention, so why not use it to say/sing something important and meaningful -- or at least melodious? Why try to convince us that all this booty-shake is a new "female anthem?" If it is (and breaking up with your boyfriend and hitting the bars is primary importance) we're sorry the gender has been reduced to this! Hasn't she noticed what troubles the women in the US & the rest of the world are enduring? -- Does anyone think they need a voice?
—Guest Fred June

ultimate cougar theme song and others

Though I'm old enough to be one, I'm not...but if I ever get up enough nerve to be a cougar, my anthem of choice for cougars would be a song by Liz Phair entitled "Rock Me." It captures everything about an impulsive fling with a younger man that makes it fun and dangerous and impossible. I'd also choose Alanis Morrisette's "You Oughta Know" as the ultimate breakup anthem, and Sarah Bareilles' "Love Song" as the anthem for women who know they'd do better without the jerk in their lives.
—Guest Roxanne

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