Lemonade. When Beyoncé was given lemons, she…wait, let us rewind: What are the lemons? Allow me to present to you: Social injustice. Sacrifice. Vulnerability. Infidelity. Love. Those are the lemons. Lemonade is not directly a jab at Jay-Z. Although, it is difficult to pinpoint which portions are applicable to him, it is safe to say assume considering the finale of her artwork that she is not reciting the eulogy of her marriage.
Her new released visual album is suitably referred to as “Lemonade.” We find ourselves wondering “who are the culprits?” or more specifically, “whom.” Could she really be throwing the “love of her life” under the bus to squeeze out the lemon juice or are there deeper layers to uncover than merely the surface skin of the lemon? Is there more than meets the citric acid sprayed in our eyes from the initial glance? Let us dig deep in the pores shall we?
We can all agree on one thing: Beyoncé is a creative mastermind. The ability to turn vulnerability into art. Art into success. Success into a Lemonade stand that is surely to bring in more than 5 cents a cup. She has made it loud and clear what comes before monetary gains, fame or other material successes – her family. Is she willing to risk it all for her success or have “we been drankin’, we been drankin'” this skillfully designed concoction too quickly to taste all the elements.
Let us go back to our initial question, shall we?
When life gives Beyoncé lemons, what did she squeeze them into? Strength. Strength is the Lemonade. This album is an emblem of that strength – to empower us all. To give our scars a microphone. This is not about one person, this is about people. These songs are not merely entries from her diary, they are also political. This is about an attempt at life, social practices, discrimination, disrespect and infidelity attempting to sabotage women, but instead causing a rebirth. A Reformation, if you will. It is a tribute to women, black women more specifically as a whole and the path the love they supply leads them to as well as the empowerment that arises as a result of the adversity, not only in personal relationships but in society. Notice, how she vandalizes quite a few vehicles in “Hold up” segment of the video, wearing a smile and a Lemon dress. It was not just one man she’s displaying rage at. She is not speaking to Jay-Z, at least not solely to him.
On forth, a homage is paid to the mother’s of sons who were victims to Police Officer shootings ending in fatality: A contribution to the “Black Lives Matter” movement. Towards the beginning of Lemonade you will find Serena Williams displaying her sex appeal freely despite the public’s criticism of her being “too strong” “too this” or “too that.” It is freedom. You will hear Malcolm X in the background, interrupting “The most disrespected person in America is the black woman. The most unprotected person in America is the black woman. The most neglected person in America is the black woman.”
Is there a bold statement regarding infidelity? 100% But, is it Jay-Z? Beyoncé has been troubled by unfaithfulness a large portion of her life, and if not having lived it, she’s had the weight of the world criticizing, speculating and dissecting every aspect of her relationship. Let us bear in mind the infidelity of her father, infidelity in her previous relationship prior to Jay-Z, as well as troubles she’s been privy to that we may not be aware of. And she turned it into art. Into Lemonade.
Surely, we’re giving Jay-Z too much credit, yet not enough considering the collateral damage he’s willingly facing. This is an excellent marketing strategy, considering the rumors and controversy (lemons) surrounding their highly publicized marriage. The public eats it up, or drinks up the juice from their own lemons. Ironic. They’re still together, evidently solid enough for him to consent to take the predictable heat and backlash which is exactly what’s needed to guarantee the success of her album. Lemonade is the juice Beyoncé gave to fuel all women across the globe. Masterfully done. So, drink on. Drink your Lemonade. Cheers.