The Hip-Hop Effect: The Bitch Complex

Be careful with the labels you willingly attach yourself to.

By: Amanda Anderson

Excuse me for a second as I throw a much needed tirade. It’s all in love, but I can stand the hypocrisy no longer. My sisters have gotten lost in the ignorant vulgarities of Hip-Hop, and have become victim to the absurd terminologies the suburban rappers throw at us in the lowest forms. It’s no longer “in” to be a queen or put ourselves on a pedestal, now we have become bad bitches and 5 star chicks. We’re supposed to be “down” for a brother that will call us a bitch or hoe in his next breath, and has no willingness to acknowledge our womanhood. A word of derogatory nature that originated for an animal that requires a leash in most states is now a term of endearment amongst women who know better. And I ask, wouldn’t you be angry if a man gave you the same label you so very gladly gave yourself?

Now I know you will gladly tell me to get with the times, hell you even throw the term around loosely with your own girlfriends. To you, bitch represents a woman of power, a woman feared among the weaker group of men, and a woman who handles her business although she may not be the easiest to love.

She’s independent, successful, and she doesn’t need a man for anything.

It all sounds good in theory, but all that power you think you have in the bitch club will be taken away from you the very moment some thuggish loser gets angry at you and calls you the very term you so happily called yourself a moment ago.

Hypocrite much?

The one term that made you feel powerful has now made you feel weak and like the scum beneath the shoe of the drug dealers who run the street corners.

That term of endearment to your sisterhood has now made you angry. What happened to your power?

I’ll tell you what happened to your power…truth is you never had it in the first place the moment you slapped that bitch sign on your forehead for the world to see.

Looking in the dictionary, you find:


a female dog.
a female of canines generally.
Slang .
a malicious, unpleasant, selfish person, esp. a woman.
a lewd woman.
Slang .
a complaint.
anything difficult or unpleasant: The test was a bitch.
Slang . to complain; gripe: They bitched about the service, then about the bill.
–verb (used with object)
Slang . to spoil; bungle (sometimes fol. by up ): He bitched the job completely. You really bitched up this math problem

Interesting. There seems to be nothing positive attached to this term. It also has no mention of power either. In fact, this is one of the lowest terms a woman can be associated with. No wonder it’s the first weapon a man grabs for when his manhood is in question.

But here’s the definition of queen:

a female sovereign or monarch.
the wife or consort of a king.
a woman, or something personified as a woman, that is foremost or preeminent in any respect: a movie queen; a beauty queen; Athens, the queen of the Aegean.
Slang: Disparaging and Offensive .
a male homosexual, esp. one who is flamboyantly campy.
drag queen.
a playing card bearing a picture of a queen.
Chess . the most powerful piece of either color, moved across any number of empty squares in any direction.
Entomology . a fertile female ant, bee, termite, or wasp.
a word formerly used in communications to represent the letter Q.
–verb (used without object)
to reign as queen.
to behave in an imperious or pretentious manner (usually fol. by it ).
Chess . to become promoted to a queen.

I see plenty mentions of power in this definition. It speaks of a woman who reigns, even the most powerful piece in chess is called a queen.

This woman is a wife and a ruler wrapped in one.

Wait, and don’t queens attract kings?

And every dog (and bitch) has a master, so who’s yours?

I’m not trying to preach from a soap box, but I only want to encourage further thinking on the label. The dictionary is filled with so many other words that could better label women making strides in their careers, being strong, and doing the unthinkable.

But instead, so many women have opted for a term that originated to describe an animal that walks on four legs, and a word that has no hint of positivity in its standard definition.

So I ask…is bitch the best you can do?


  1. Ignorance makes women refer to themselves with demeaning labels. This article is the truth, and I appreciate you for writing it. Women have to do better, we are being dominated and we don't even recognize it. There's nothing strong about labeling yourself as a bitch. Real talk

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