Lizzo Twerking TED
BANG Showbiz English
Lizzo credits twerking for helping her to love her butt.
The ‘Good as Hell’ hitmaker admitted her backside used to be her “least favourite” part of her body, but she admitted her opinion has changed dramatically in recent years, largely thanks to the raunchy dance move.
In a new TED Talk, she said: “I used to think that only asses like J.Lo’s or Beyoncé’s could be famous. I always felt like my body type wasn’t the right one or the desirable one growing up, because I grew up in an era where having a big ass wasn’t mainstream…
“My a** has been the topic of conversation. My a** has been in magazines. Rihanna gave my a** a standing ovation. … How did this happen? Twerking! Through the movement of twerking, I discovered my a** is my greatest asset.”
In the talk, Lizzo reflected on the history of twerking, explaining how it evolved from West African dance styles to become a staple of Black club culture in the 1980s, before hitting the mainstream thanks to Miley Cyrus’ controversial MTV Video Music Awards (VMAs) performance in 2013.
From that point, Lizzo felt twerking has been adopted by pop culture and “misunderstood and taken out of context”.
She said: ““I wish that a Black woman could have popularized twerking in the mainstream. Everything that Black people create, from fashion to music to the way we talk, is co-opted, appropriated and taken by pop culture.”
However, the 31-year-old star insisted she wasn’t “trying to gatekeep”.
But she added: “But I’m definitely trying to let you know who built the damn gate.”
And Lizzo vowed to use her platform to continute to highlight the origins of the dance style.
She said: “I twerk for fat, Black women because being fat and Black is a beautiful thing.
“Black women invented twerking and twerking is part of the revolution. We’ve been doing it, we going to keep doing it, because we have and always will be the blueprint.”