An article that was recently published in the «Guardian» attracted my attention. Gary Taylor, the author of the article is trying to find similarities between Hamlet and Eminem. He also intends to explain what he calls « the Eminem generation »:
Bridging Eminem with Hamlet?
Finding similarities between Shakespeare’s character, Hamlet, and Eminem would have sounded ok to me, as long as Gary Taylor would have talked about stage characters, not about a real person.
But Gary’s non hidden intention was to prove that Marshall Mathers is a perfect asshole and a big woman hater. His conclusion: because he strongly hates them, woman love him so much. A too rapid conclusion, as far as I am concerned.
First, I strongly disagree with the way Marshall Mathers is portrayed. The author of the article even uses physical similarities between Shakespeare’s Hamlet and Eminem to demonstrate his theory. Which I find despicable.
Hamlet, Shakespeare’s character is short. So is Eminem. So what?
Gary Taylor should make a difference between Eminem’s stage character and the real Marshall Mathers.
People who are close to Marshall describe him as a real nice and even shy person. I think that Eminem is so right when he claims:
« They portrayed me as a vicious, vile, evil person. But I wouldn’t have got anywhere in this business if I was just a complete asshole. »
The same journalist also pictures Eminem in such a negative light: people who don’t know anything about the talented rapper could easily believe that he is the main responsible for misogyny in this world. Rap music lyrics do have a misogynistic content: it’s a matter of fact. Eminem’s texts aren’t more misogynistic than Ice Cube’s.
But, moreover, Eminem’s lyrics need to be understood as a parody of domestic violence. People have shouted « kill Kim! » on stage? It was only for the show…
During his concert in Paris, Eminem has also invited us to chant : « fuck you Debbie Debbie! ». I have done it too. When Eminem invited us to do so, I perfectly understood that it was his way to work out his problems with his mom.
Even fans need to understand there is a huge difference between the reality of a show and our every day reality. I mean, I would never dare insulting Debbie Mathers in real life if I happened to meet her. Why? Because she remains Eminem’s mom and because Eminem’s problems with her belong to his private sphere.
Gary Taylor also pictures Eminem as « a role-playing, violent comedian, who viciously verbally abuses the two adult women in his life, his middle-aged mother and his first love, Kim. »
It is a matter of fact Eminem has written some harsh lyrics against Kim and Debbie.
It would be wize to analyze both women’s behavior towards Eminem:
- Debbie was an abusive, drug addicted, sick and dominative mom who barely gave love to her son.
- Kim is Marshall’s first love since High School. Marshall has always been sincere with Kim.
Marshall might have killed her in two songs, but the person who has been manipulative and dominative in their couple is Kim. She is the one who has betrayed her ex husband.
Kim isn’t Marshall’s victim in real life.
Knowing precise facts about Eminem, it sounds ridiculous to picture him as the new symbol for misogyny.
Brittany Murphy describes him as a very decent person. If he was a misogynistic monster in real life, I don’t think that Kim would have been back with him several times since their divorce.
Some female fans may be attracted by Eminem’s looks, but many of them are able to appreciate his great talent, his rhyming ability and his personality.
I’m a female, an adult fan and a graduate who fully appreciates the artistry of Eminem and who doesn’t take him for a « violent misogynist » in real life.
Eminem is one of the most talked about rappers, but he remains the most misunderstood. It is high time people realized Marshall Mathers is not the evil monster some media are trying to picture.