Beyoncé’s “Freedom” From Different Angles (Part I)

Freedom! Freedom! I can’t move
Freedom, cut me loose!
Yeah, freedom! Freedom! Where are you?
‘Cause I need freedom too!
I break chains all by myself
Won’t let my freedom rot in hell
Hey! Imma keep running
‘Cause a winner don’t quit on themselves



Beyoncé cry for “Freedom” in her sixth and latest album Lemonade can be viewed from different angles.

In this post, I analyze the messages I got from viewing the “Freedom” music video.





Music Video

(Click here to view the music video)



African Americans had their freedom stripped mostly by early Europeans and European-Americans.

This is represented by how everyone in the video was dressed in what seems to be old-fashioned, European-styled clothes.

Although African Americans assimilated into the European and European-American cultures when they were enslaved, most Europeans and European-Americans never wanted to infuse the African culture into theirs.


Without freedom, people are lifeless.

Not only do the dresses make African Americans look European, but they also make people look like dolls.

Even though dolls look human, they do not have souls and a life, therefore having no freedom. Moreover, dolls do not have control over their bodies; they are manipulated by their users.

African Americans were portrayed as dolls in the video because their superiors (slave masters, those who are racist towards African Americans, etc.) dehumanized them in order to suppress their freedom.




Without confidence, freedom is hard to achieve.

The African American ballerina in the video displayed a lack of confidence in the way she occassionally stumbled, halted, kept her head down, and averted her eyes away from the audience.

Even though the ballerina seems like a good dancer, there is an invisible yet visible, and intangible yet tangible force that hinders her from expressing her full artistic character. (That force most likely comes from European and European Americans because of the reasons I mentioned earlier.)


The journey to freedom can feel frightening.

The ballerina’s clumsy dance can also show how frightened she is by her audience. Her audience not only outnumbered her, but they were also binded together by darkness. Because of how her audience was not expressing any sentiment towards her dance, she tried to ignore them and stay within her small and brightly-lit stage (a.k.a. her world).

Freedom may have be restricted to that small, warm stage, but the ballerina was not afraid to fight against her fear of the large, cold world that encapsulated the stage she desired to be in.


It takes at least one person to get freedom.

While others never dared to step onto the stage, Beyoncé and the ballerina each got freedom of expression and to think for oneself when they were on the stage.

In addition to that, both women show that as long as one has the willpower to get freedom and acts upon it, then freedom is guaranteed.


Women lack freedom.

The long dresses in the video narrow the focus of viewers on the faces and body movements of the dissatisfied-looking women instead of their curves so that the women can better communicate how they lack the freedom to express their bodies not only in front of other men, but also in front of themselves and other women.

That lack of freedom should not only be blamed by men, but by women as well. Women who do not try to express a positive definition of female beauty make themselves essentially promote the dehumanization of themselves and other women.



The dream of freedom is timeless.

The stiff and still people shown in the black-and-white scenes of the video represent generations of people who were deprived and dreaming of their freedom.

In contrast, the individual people shown in the colorful scenes of the video show how despite how a lot of time has passed, people’s freedoms are still being overshadowed.

Throughout history and today, people hope to break free from the enduring chains set by themselves and their suppressors so that they can end the everlasting cycle of oppression.


People are naturally never completely satisfied with their freedom.

Despite how women want to dominate their patriarchal society, they feel incomplete. This is depicted through the female-populated garden in the video.

The garden may be reminiscent of Eden, while the women may be reminiscent of Eve. Both Adam and Eve were created for each other to balance themselves in the world.

Perhaps the women in the video have been so influenced by their enemies that characteristics of their enemies still reside within their world and themselves.




Freedom is difficult to find.

Freedom may be in hindsight, but it is difficult to find because of how it is invisible and concealed by others.

If the woman holding a mirror in front of her face in the video represents freedom, than she indicated how only freedom can identify itself while those on the other side of the mirror cannot.

In addition to that, the ballerina’s audience may not have caught a glimpse of freedom because of how the ballerina’s awkward performance failed to release the freedom that resides in her mind and, therefore, transform the environment into one that is capable of housing freedom.


False freedom imprisons people.

Regardless of whether or not we realize how we and/or others possess false freedom, false freedom imprisons people. That is because some choose to live in a bubble, while others live in a bubble unwillingly.

The woman wearing a thorny head accessory in the video is redolent of the Statue of Liberty. She may be an African American, but calling herself American does not change the fact that she does not have the full freedom she wishes for in a place where discrimination towards Africans exist.





If there are any ofher ways to interpret the song and its music video, please leave a reply below. I love to learn about other people’s insights.


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