Beyoncé is regarded as one of the most influential pop icons of the 21st century. Did you know she is also a reader? In fact, many aspects of her recent video Lemonade come from books. For example, the sequence “Hold Up” comes from a book called The Bat by Pipilotti Rist. The book itself is more of a collage of images but it still conveys a story that was significant enough to be a featured in Beyoncé’s video.
Perhaps most importantly is Beyoncé’s biography, Becoming Beyoncé by J. Randy Taraborrelli. The book outlines her matrimonial struggles with intense detail. Fans are speculating that Lemonade is about Jay-z, however the biography introduces many other characters in her life that she may have drawn inspiration from. Who am I kidding, it has to be Jay-z, right?
Throughout ‘Lemonade’ Beyoncé quotes a book called, Teaching My Mother How to Give Birth by Warsan Shire. Seems a bit arrogant, but I guess you have to read the book to understand. Warsan Shire is known for highlighting low brow humor and citing rap lyrics as if they were classical poems. She is changing the way we look at art by treating urban art as worthy of the ivory tower. Beyoncé quotes her work frequently, this is a must read for the true fan.
The last book on the list is a collection of speeches from Malcom X. Many aspects of Malcom X Speaks focuses on the oppression faced by black women in particular. Being a woman is one thing, but being a black woman is another. Malcom discusses this deeply and eloquently, anybody sympathetic to the social movement Beyoncé is a part of will love will find a home in Malcom’s work.
Any self-respecting fan of queen B must pick up these books. Reading will always give you a deeper understanding of things. Beyoncé draws from a long historical movement that cannot be fully captured in her music alone. Pick up these books and enter the real of true fan-dom.
Featured image courtesy of http://bit.ly/28LLNFv