Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 1 October 2014

Male artists 'sold on sexuality'

Sinead O'Connor said Justin Bieber 'was very much being sold on his sexuality'

Sinead O'Connor has spoken out about how she feels young male stars are being exploited for their sexuality, as well as young women.

Her comments came after concerns about female stars being sold as sex objects, some of whom are willingly going along with it

Concerns have been raised about the racy content of music promos and the stage performances of some acts such as Miley Cyrus. Singer Charlotte Church delivered a lecture last year outlining concerns about the exploitation of women and the underlying sexism of the music industry.

But in an interview with Magic FM, controversial singer Sinead highlighted how young male pop acts are similarly exploited, citing Canadian singer Justin Bieber, who was in his mid-teens when he found fame.

She said: "I think that people focus an awful lot on the female aspect to this, but it is also the males. The very young male artists who are practically children or look like children are also being sexualised. Justin Bieber is a great example.

"When he came along he was only 16 years of age. Obviously he was extraordinarily talented, so I'm not trying to negate that, but he was very much being sold on his sexuality."

She went on: "Britney Spears, of course was quite inappropriately young to be sold in that way, dressed up in a school uniform, but I think that really people forget that the guys are going through it as well, and I think that is quite important."

Sinead was also worried about the audience who were being targeted, during the interview to be broadcast at 7pm on Sunday.

The star - who named her new album I'm Not Bossy, I'm The Boss after a campaign to encourage the empowerment of young women - said: "What concerns me is that the audience of these artists are children themselves.

"The children are being sexualised too early and both the male and female sense of worth is focused on the way they look and whether or not they are attractive to the opposite sex."

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