Current Women in Country Music
Many women in today's country music are trying to return attention to country music's roots by returning the subject matter to the struggles of working class rural life. Carrie Underwood's song "Blown Away" deals with themes of child abuse in rural Oklahoma in a dramatic manner, while the Dixie Chicks's "Goodbye Earl" deals with the topic of domestic abuse with dark humor. Brandy Clark's "Pray to Jesus" offers a sympathetic view of rural working class struggle, criticizing the customs of small town life, while still understanding the sentiments from where those customs originated. A critical and realistic view of small town life is one of the more important traits of this type of country music. Casey Quinlan writes in her article "When Country Music Goes to the Dark Side of Small-Town Life" that "recently, a few female country singers have stepped away from this point of view, portraying small-town narratives in a more melancholy light. Instead of endorsing the country lifestyle, these artists question small-town living, the value of tradition, and the virtue in staying in one’s place" (Quinlan, 2013). It is possible that women are becoming increasingly more critical of this traditionalist lifestyle as they are more likely to suffer institutional oppression due to sexism, which worsens the struggles of low-income life.
Quinlan, Casey. "When Country Music Goes to the Dark Side of Small-Town Life." The Atlantic. Atlantic Media Company, 19 Nov. 2013. Web. 22 Apr. 2015. <http://www.theatlantic.com/entertainment/archive/2013/11/when-country-music-goes-to-the-dark-side-of-small-town-life/281544/>.