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Following Madonna’s appearance on James Corden’s Carpool Karaoke last week where she admitted for the first time to kissing Michael Jackson, the highest-grossing female touring artist of all time opened up again. This time, it was at the Billboard Women in Music 2016 awards where, while accepting the award for Woman Of The Year, Madonna left the audience speechless as she talked about misogyny and abuse that plagued her rise to the top.
Speaking again about being raped on a New York City rooftop at the beginning of her career, the singer then went on to say she had lost a lot of her friends unexpectedly to AIDS, drugs or gunshot. But it was the sarcastic way in which she addressed the entertainment industry’s double standards that had ears pricked up. “If you’re a girl, you have to play the game,” she said. “You’re allowed to be pretty and cute and sexy. But don’t act too smart. Don’t have an opinion that’s out of line with the status quo. You are allowed to be objectified by men and dress like a slut, but don’t own your sluttiness. And do not, I repeat do not, share your own sexual fantasies with the world. Be what men want you to be, but more importantly, be what women feel comfortable with you being around other men. And finally, do not age. Because to age is a sin. You will be criticized and vilified and definitely not played on the radio.”
Watch the highlights here: