Some Swans Are Still Ugly Ducklings

[Trigger Warning for Racism/Misogyny/Rape Culture]

Today’s cis-white-male-fail is brought to you by the band Swans who, though their music may be innovative, are about as typical as it gets when it comes to unchecked privilege, as proved clear by the fact that they have a song called Raping a Slave.

The lyrics are uneventful (basically just “You Burn Out Your Heart / You Burn Out My Heart” over and over), and apparently it’s about going to work.

That is so fucking inappropriate I can’t even… what? Unbridled entitlement + experimental guitar = Swans, ladies and gentlemen!


About punksexism

bringing light to the constantly ignored sexism (and endless other discrimination) in punk!
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19 Responses to Some Swans Are Still Ugly Ducklings

  1. Pauline Pogo says:

    Hey there, new to your blog and I just wanted to give you props for saying what we’re all thinking! It’s important to maintain a platform for open discourse in the punk scene – let’s take it back!

  2. jonny jawbreaker says:

    really when did punk get so machisimo? it makes mes o disturbed to see a lyric like that – as if they are proud!!!!!!!! proud of what, theyre hate?

  3. Yours Truly says:

    Heh, my friends are going gaga over this it’s funny you write this because ive been saying this for a while so it was funny to see my friend forward it my way (surprised they havent commented yet) and see that someone finally agrees this kind of stuff is such garbage and really makes it hard to feel comfortable within the world of punk it really hurts the idea of having a place where we can have positive progressive discourse which is what punk is all about when will people learn flex your head

  4. Brett says:

    I dunno, that’s mega fucked up but I can’t help but shit for Swans! Fucking FILTH! Classic!


  5. punksexism says:

    Thanks everyone! Great to hear positive feedback.

  6. Brett says:

    But I understand don’t get me wrong.

  7. Brett says:

    Well shit, now that I think about it more, I’d be interested to hear what you think about bands using certain imagery in a fucked up and subversive way (like Swans has here). Is it ever ok? Or is it just totally fucked? Never really heard this point of view before and I’m curious!

  8. jonny jawbreaker says:

    haha no problem, gotta stay postive!!!!!!

  9. shitkicker says:

    Is this blog for real? Fucking witch hunt in the punk scene. Punk is already a fucking joke you twerp. Oooh ohhh! Punk, moreso now than it ever was is a commodified and pretty package of rebellion. Completely impotent, and has never really contributed, besides minimally to any kind of social justice, outside of it’s cliquey niche. Nice try though, idiots. Calling out sexism in punk = finding corn in my poop. Wastes of time, and no one gives a shit. This blog is a fucking joke. THE RAMONES SAY THEY’RE NAZIS IN A SONG, BURN YOUR RAMONES RECORDS.

  10. punksexism says:

    “has never really contributed, besides minimally to any kind of social justice” – yet so many people, the same ones who perpetuate bigotry, claim to rise above because they’re part of the punk scene. This blog is about showing that that claim doesn’t mean shit and that punk is just as problematic as anywhere else.

    Clearly your claim that “no one gives a shit” is inaccurate given how much positive feedback I’ve gotten about this blog and how many thousands of views it gets.

    Also, Joey Ramone was Jewish, so…

  11. Trevor LeBlanc says:

    Your blog is dumb. Get a new hobby, please.

  12. punksexism says:

    My blog isn’t as dumb as that Swans song, though.

  13. shitkicker says:

    You do know Swans have a female member, right? I can’t believe I’m entertaining this, you clearly know fuck all about the band.

  14. punksexism says:

    Ha, because having a female member in a band makes it perfectly okay to call a song “Raping A Slave.”

  15. shitkicker says:

    just following your brilliant logic with what you said about the ramones. do you know anything about punk, and using disturbing imagery/lyrics/whatever solely as a means of being shocking? has that been lost on you, because that’s precisely what’s being done here. are you that fucking thick to think they can be advocating rape right here? you’re completely conjecturing something in order to get a post for this steaming pile of a shit you call a blog. is there a post on this blog denouncing last rites because they have a picture of hitler on their record? what about the fucked up record with the rows of people in a sieg heil? you’re a fucking crybaby and people like you, who maybe have good intentions, just end up being as stupid and ignorant as everyone else. give yourself a pat on the back.

  16. punksexism says:

    Do YOU know anything about privilege, and the fact that it’s not okay for people who have it over others to re-claim imagery to be ~shocking~?

  17. punksexism says:

    Also, you’re the one coming here and being a “crybaby” about a post on the internet, so looks like we wear the same label.

    It’s sad when people are this moved to anger to defend how cool men are for using rape imagery, moved to the point of calling something a “steaming pile of shit” because it points out privileged fuck-ups in punk music.

    And yes, I know all about the history of punk using “offensive images to be shocking,” and I think it’s ridiculous. If your only way to get attention is to wear a swastika, that’s just pathetic.

  18. not sure about the misogyny ‘trigger-warning’ at the article’s outset – after all, sometimes men get raped too.

  19. punksexism says:

    You’re absolutely right – I updated it to reflect that. I apologize for the erasure.

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