Beyonce's GQ cover has leaked and her body is still - even post-baby- absolutely RIDICULOUS. She could lose the belly chain circa Destiny's Child Say My Name but whatever, I'll forgive her.
Twitter critics said she shouldn't have posed like this given that she's now a married woman with a child. Part of me gets that, but another part of me is very uncomfortable with this lingering idea of what a married woman is supposed to be. She's married so she can't show her body. Why? Because it 'belongs' to her husband? She has a kid so she can't be sexy? Motherhood is an immediate transformation to knitting classes and sale sprees at Talbots?
I don't like this idea that a wife or mother is expected to pack up her sex appeal and store it in the attic for the rest of her life. I don't entirely understand why a woman can't be more than one thing at once. We exist in phases. Phase One is instilled in us early: be fun, be sexy, have a sense of humour, pay attention to maintenance and grooming, don't nag, don't bitch, be sassy. Phase Two is don't be a slut, get into a relationship. Phase Three: After a few of these, get married. Don't be fun: be responsible. Be thin and pretty, but don't be sexy - it shames your husband. It's too young for you. Pay attention to the housework and the bills, not your wardrobe. I don't know. It's not something you'd ever see a man catching criticism for. I just don't understand why a woman like Beyonce - who is NEVER in the tabloids for cocaine, hard-partying or a shaky marriage despite her perch at the very top of the A list - is not allowed to be sexy simply because she's had a child. Do we forget that she has a career in an industry where regularly reasserting your sex appeal is VITAL to its success? No, critics seem to be seeing her only as Jay-Z's wife, a married woman, and a mother, rather than the classy powerhouse that she is.
Frankly I think the marketing move was timed extremely well by her handlers. She HAS been fading into the wife/mother role in the last year. Rightly so, given that she was taking care of the bebe, but people have been forgetting about her in favour of Rihanna. A shocking shoot to remind people who's boss, to shake things up a little bit, to get people to raise their eyebrows and think of her as they did when she began her career is exactly the point.