Protest Song Of The Week: ‘You Are My Enemy’ By ANOHNI
There are few musicians creating bold and impassioned music that goes to the root of global problems among humanity. ANOHNI is one of those artists.
Her 2016 album, “Hopelessness,” explored destruction of the planet, warfare, and the surveillance state. She used direct and specific language as she grappled with these issues.
Anohni released a follow-up EP called, “Paradise,” on March 17. On one hand, it is more ambiguous. She does not name what it is that pains her. On the other hand, those looking for what specifically is behind the pain and anguish in her songs can refer to her previous album. It is clear this builds on “Hopelessness.”
The single she released from the album is “Paradise,” but it is “You Are My Enemy” that is most striking and blunt.
“I never felt a part of this world/I reject the way that we live/I gave birth to my own enemy/I gave birth to my own enemy,” she sings.
The song is just over two and a half minutes and builds to an incantation at the end where she recites, “You are my enemy,” multiple times.
We don’t have to guess who ANOHNI sees as the enemy.
“Our new leaders hope to crush our spirits and expedite ecocide in the name of virulent progress, consumerism and false security. Like Jihadis, many capitalists and Christians compulsively seek to facilitate a righteous ‘holy war,’ or apocalypse,” she writes in an artist statement posted in January.
“For millennia, Men have enslaved women and attempted to appropriate female creative power, re-casting themselves as gods and creators. This assault continues today in the forms of ruthless wealth and mineral extraction, genetic engineering, mass surveillance and war mongering.”
It becomes clear from ANOHNI’s artist statement the song is from the respective of mothers, who gave birth to sons incapable of “responsibly negotiating the destructive agency that they now wield.” People like President Donald Trump and the other males in his cabinet are perfectly fine with ecocide. They will push humanity to extinction, where Mother Earth can no longer sustain life.
“Only an intervention by women around the world, with their innate knowledge of interdependency, deep listening, empathy and self-sacrifice, could possibly alter our species’ desperate course,” ANOHNI concludes.
Listen to “You Are My Enemy”:
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