"Woman is the Nigger of the World" as written by Yoko Ono and John Lennon....
Woman is the nigger of the world
Yes she is, think about it
Woman is the nigger of the world
Think about it, do something about it

We make her paint her face and dance
If she won't be aslave, we say that she don't love us
If she's real, we say she's trying to be a man
While putting her down we pretend that she is above us
Woman is the nigger of the world, yes she is
If you don't believe me take a look to the one you're with
Woman is the slave to the slaves
Ah yeah, better scream about it
We make her bear and raise our children
And then we leave her flat for being a fat old mother hen
We tell her home is the only place she should be
Then we complain that she's too unworldly to be our friend
Woman is the nigger of the world, yes she is
If you don't believe me take a look to the one you're with
Oh woman is the slave to the slaves
Yeah, alright

We insult her everyday on TV
And wonder why she has no guts or confidence
When she's young we kill her will to be free
While telling her not to be so smart we put her down for being so dumb
Woman is the nigger of the world, yes she is
If you don't believe me take a look to the one you're with
Woman is the slave to the slaves
Yes she is, if you believe me, you better scream about it

We make her paint her face and dance
We make her paint her face and dance
We make her paint her face and dance
We make her paint her face and dance
We make her paint her face and dance
We make her paint her face and dance


Lyrics submitted by dollerspark

"Woman Is the Nigger of the World" as written by Yoko Ono John Lennon

Lyrics © Downtown Music Publishing

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Woman is the Nigger of the World song meanings
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  • +1
    General CommentThe song meaning is pretty clear and I believe that it has the same meaning now as it used to when the song was written. Actually it is like that with all the songs Lennon had written. He speaks about what is the role assigned to the females in the society and that women are forced to conform otherwise as he states: "we say she's trying to be a man". One of the major ideas of the song is that this is so deep in our minds that we accepted for granted so much that we are not even able to see it.

    I just have to disagree with LennonGenius! on the following points. He/She assumes too many things and from the comment I would assume that He/She is a white male from the US :)

    I cannot speak for all the history since I am not too well prepared on the subject, but I agree that since the beginning of capitalism woman had been living in a very patriarchal society, I assume that it was like that long time before the emergence of capitalism, but I doubt it was on that large scale as it is now. Anyways I do not agree that women were not "threated like that" thru all the history. All history is not in any ways the history of capitalism;)

    According to this sentence:
    "Blacks, as well as women (at least in America) are becoming much more accepted"

    There are many nation-states that people with black/brown skin colour were always accepted and the values of the US society do not apply to all the world.

    I do not think that the strong patriarchical society in many parts o the US is in any way less patriarchical in the last decades. Just can you imagine a woman presidential candidate from the republican party? Or any large-scale questioning of the authority of the founding FATHERS for example?

    What I am meaning that the problems are still very strong not only in the US of course, but everywhere in the world. I agree that Lennon was kinda a genius since he showed us very clearly where are the problems of the contemporary society and gave us a roadmap how we should stand and fight against them.
    antiauthon January 23, 2007   Link
  • +1
    General Comment"He could not write a song and use the word nigger now a days"? What, it was perfectly acceptable for use in 1972?

    All of these long explanations. Let's keep it simple, shall we?

    "Woman is the slave to the slaves"

    What's worse than being black in the US before the civil rights movements of the 60's? Being a black woman. No matter how bad the men have it, the women have it just as bad and worse.

    Are things getter better? Well, I've got to admit it's getting better, a little better, all the time. Can't get no worse.
    Dhampir Boyon July 27, 2008   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis song is kind of self-explanatory. Women are supposed to look a certain way and act as slaves even though they are put down. Women have to be beautiful and fit after they beared and raised their children...if they aren't, they are kicked to the curb. Women are degraded.
    SpongeBunnyon October 05, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentIt's simply about the fact that women have been opprssed my men for a long period of time throughout our history as people. I think John saw this because it was still around at the time, as opposed to now where women are becoming much more equal with men in a lot of ways.

    When he says, "Women is the nigger of the world, yes she is, think about it", John Lennon is telling the person to understand this metaphor. It's a metaphor because the same way in which niggers, or Black African Americans were treated in this country for a large part of our history, women too have been treated all over the world forever (and this means for most of our history). I love this metaphor and I think more people should understand it: it's very lovely.

    Blacks, as well as women (at least in America) are becoming much more accepted as equals among white men, and among men in general. I love how Lennon expressed things so beautifully. Just as my name expresses, Lennon was a pure genius.
    LennonGenius!on August 19, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentOk people...here is what i think....I think you will agree.
    The song Woman is the Nigger of the World means that John acknowledges the fact that women have been oppressed for a long time...hundreds of years ago they were only good for bearing children (as people thought.....it was only until about 80 years ago that women could vote.
    He is comparing them to niggers* (I am not using this as a racial slur, just taking a piece of the song title to use for comparison), but black people had been oppresseed as slaves up until 1865, and that was about all the potential that was given to them at that time.
    So therefore he had compared both of them together in a song because he realized that they both have been oppressed.I am a man that has realized the same thing as John Lennon has, and now just wrote about it.
    TidewaterHippieon April 12, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentOk people...here is what i think....I think you will agree.
    The song Woman is the Nigger of the World means that John acknowledges the fact that women have been oppressed for a long time...hundreds of years ago they were only good for bearing children (as people thought.....it was only until about 80 years ago that women could vote.
    He is comparing them to niggers* (I am not using this as a racial slur, just taking a piece of the song title to use for comparison), but black people had been oppresseed as slaves up until 1865, and that was about all the potential that was given to them at that time.
    So therefore he had compared both of them together in a song because he realized that they both have been oppressed.I am a man that has realized the same thing as John Lennon has, and now just wrote about it.
    TidewaterHippieon April 12, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General Commentthis is a very powerful song and john had to really use his imagination about the future. i think in the future john might be right woman is the nigger of the world if not already. and it's even more true for women who are not educated. because the could be abuse and their ignorance allows them to try and solve the problem the wrong way and get into more trouble. just the fact that some women are so emotionally unstable that they fear to go to the authority when they are abuse. women don't know what they want and we don't know what type of women we want. maybe it's just a time of change and thing will be well again.
    hellsyeahon February 18, 2008   Link
  • 0
    General CommentHow this song raised the hackles on the listener when it came out. How dare he say these things?!!! But they were true - and so frequently the truth hurts because we have to take a look at ourselves and either become aware of our own shortcomings or lash out in defensive vitriol. I believe this is probably the first women's liberation song ever but it rarely gets that label since most can't see anything before Helen Reddy's 'I Am Woman'.
    Tweezeon February 05, 2011   Link
  • 0
    General CommentIt's an excellent song that hits hard and deep. Hadn't realized he sang this until someone I stumbled upon was listening to it two years back. The use of "nigger" is hard-hitting. And he uses it intentionally. It's a word that does not have its roots with African Americans. A nigger was originallly a low life, regardless of gender; color; creed; etc. Love the song, with the the exception of the line about men making us bare and raise their children. It takes two to conceive and it's about choice...before, during, and after birth. In fact, men don't even get a say if we choose to kill our growing child. Times have changed drastically since this song was written and although many of the ol' stereotypes about women remain, we have made huge strides within the court system; the workplace; and the colleges. Who knew more women would be enrolled in college now than men? Who knew white males would be dropping out of high school at higher rates than women (and minorities)? Who knew that in a few decades it will be women dominating the top jobs due to their college degrees? For some, we will always be the niggers of the world, but it is up to us to live our lives the way we see fit while fighting discrimination whenever we are faced with it. Wonderful song!
    ComeOnEileenon October 31, 2011   Link
  • -1
    General CommentWoah, he could not write a song and use the word nigger now a days. Times have changed. He's writing about how women were (and some still are) OPPRESSED AS HELL. From a young age guys tell girls that they are stronger than them in every way. It's about how controlling men are of their women.
    whisperingdevilon February 25, 2008   Link

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