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Singer Annie Lennox, former member of the Eurythmics, was on NPR promoting her new album of jazz standards when the topic turned toward feminism, and a previous interview in which Lennox labeled Bey “feminist lite.”

NPR’s Steve Inskeep asked, “What has made you comment on a lot of modern music today that is being put out by women as being over-sexualized?”

“Well you’ve said it in the question,” Lennox replied. “The reason why I’ve commented is because I think that this overt sexuality thrust — literally — at particular audiences, when very often performers have a very, very young audience, like 7 years older, I find it disturbing and I think its exploitative. It’s troubling. I’m coming from a perspective of a woman that’s had children.”

Asking specifically about Bey, Inskeep said, “Some people will know that you specifically criticized Beyonce for this the other day.”

“Well, I didn’t specifically criticize Beyonce,” Lennox clarified. “I was being asked about Beyonce in the context of feminism, and I was thinking at the time about very impactful feminists that have dedicated their lives to the movement of liberating women and supporting women at the grass roots, and I was saying, ‘well that’s one end of the spectrum, and then you have the other end of the spectrum.’”

Inskeep pressed further: “It sounds like you feel that there was a phrase taken and that became the headline, but you were actually trying to deliver a more involved thought?”

“Listen,” said Lennox, “Twerking is not feminism. Thats what I’m referring to. It’s not — it’s not liberating, it’s not empowering. It’s a sexual thing that you’re doing on a stage; it doesn’t empower you. That’s my feeling about it.” Before returning to her new album “Nostalgia,” Lennox suggested, “Maybe this is a good thing because it creates debate.”

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