Beyoncé: 'Men are free and women are not'

In forthcoming interview with Out magazine, the singer hopes her latest album will provoke conversations about a sexual 'double standard' between men and women

In a forthcoming interview, Beyoncé has called out "the double standard" of contemporary sexuality, proposing that her latest album has "opened up [a] conversation" about women as sexual beings, and not just victims.

"Men are free and women are not," the singer wrote in an email interview with Out magazine for its May Power issue, her first feature since debuting her self-titled album in December. "The old lessons of submissiveness and fragility made us victims. [But] women are so much more than that. You can be a businesswoman, a mother, an artist, and a feminist – whatever you want to be – and still be a sexual being. It’s not mutually exclusive."

With its frank lyrics about female power, desire, libido, envy and sex, Beyoncé's self-titled studio album, surprise-released last December, has been received as a kind of mission statement about empowerment and third-wave feminism. But although Beyoncé seems happy that people are talking about these ideas, she says the songs weren't deliberately political: "I really set out to make the most personal, honest, and best album I could make," she said, free from "the pressures and expectations of what I thought I should say or be".

"Being that I am a woman in a male-dominated society," she continued, "the feminist mentality rang true to me and became a way to personalise that struggle." Ultimately, she said she had more on her mind than the relationships "between a woman and a man … What I'm really referring to, and hoping for, is [overall] human rights and equality," she said. It's meant as a vision for anyone "who considers themselves an oppressed minority … to be just who we want to be and to love who we want to love".

The singer's fifth album is currently at No 20 on the UK chart.

Powered by article was written by Sean Michaels, for on Wednesday 9th April 2014 08.57 Europe/London © Guardian News and Media Limited 2010