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- Reaching for my Gnu: poetry
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- Yellow Peril Orientalism
Tuesday, 26 April 2011
Farewell Poly Styrene: O Death, Up Yours
Today we bid a sad farewell to Poly Styrene who has died from cancer.
One of the first women who swept to prominence on the punk wave of the 1970s, Poly made a massive impact. She challenged the insipid standards of female beauty of the time with unconventional looks that included a mouthful of metal, puppy-fat that had yet to melt, and a spiky attitude that refused to capitulate to the usual mind-numbing requirements of a moribund music industry but carved out an identity of her own.
When she sang, 'Some people think little girls should be seen and not heard, but I think, O bondage, up yours,' you knew something had changed forever.
She had a troubled life following her heyday. Hit by a fire engine, misdiagnosed with schizophrenia, she was incarcerated in a mental hospital and only seemed to find peace when she joined a Hari Krishna sect.
Goodbye, Poly. A cultural pioneer who made the world a better place. O Death, up yours.