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Lady Gaga “Til It Happens To You” Music Video Review

maxresdefaultThe new hit by Lady Gaga “Til It Happens To You” is not her normal “Poker Face” or “Bad Romance” type of upbeat jam, instead it is a serious social commentary on sexual assaults happening on college campuses. The song, written by Gaga, was originally made for the documentary “Hunting Ground,” about sexual violence on campuses, and a portion of the proceeds from this film went to organizations to help assault survivors. Gaga has spoken out about being raped when she was 19 by a music producer, and therefore feels a personal connection to this issue. Although this song expresses something that is often difficult to understand if you have not experienced it yourself, it is important for college students to recognize that this is an ongoing problem on campuses nationwide.

The main lyrics in the piece are “You don’t know how it feels, til it happens to you.” Although these words could very well apply to many different circumstances, Gaga clearly depicts the social issue of rape in the music video. The first portion of the video portrays a few women in different situations where they unfortunately end up being sexually assaulted. There are very graphic images in these scenes, which allows the audience to understand how horrible and life-changing sexual assault is. It then shows these young women attempting to go back to their normal lives, but not being able to because they are too distracted by their scarring experiences.lady-gaga-till-it-happens-to-you-2

The girls in the video are shown to have written phrases with Sharpie on their skin such as “I am worthless” or “I hate myself,” which describes how many survivors feel after they have been assaulted: their self-confidence plummets . They end up blaming themselves for what has happened, even though it is in no way their fault, and it can be argued that society is partially to blame for this.

In the video, the women experience flashbacks , and it seems to replay constantly in their heads. One of the phrases written is “believe me,” inferring in many cases that victims of sexual assault are not believed for various unfair reasons.

After the young women have explained the situation to those they trust and love, they are reassured that it is not their fault and their confidence increases again. They realize that they are worthy and should love themselves, and will not allow this terrible event to dictate how they live the rest of their lives or how they define themselves. At the end of the video, they are walking out together; depicting that there is strength in numbers and that in order to end sexual assault, we must come together and vocalize how much of an issue it is in our society.

I think that because Lady Gaga is such an idolized and powerful woman in the music industry, it was a great move on her part to produce a song and video that brought such awareness to such an important topic. When the video ends, a message on the screen says “One in five women this year will be sexually assaulted unless something changes,” followed by a phone number for the sexual assault hotline. This statistic is ridiculously high, and the 16,100,000+ viewers of this video should recognize this, and hopefully be moved to do whatever they can to lower these numbers.

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Lady Gaga “Til It Happens To You” Music Video Review