British rapper, singer, and actress Simbiatu “Simbi” Abisola Abiola Ajikawo, aka Little Simz, was born on February 23, 1994. Ajikawo was born in London to Nigerian parents of Yoruba descent. Her award-winning third studio album Grey Area (2019) took social media by storm with the women’s liberation anthem Venom. Sold out audiences allow the lyricist to finish the first verse until she comes to the last line, which stirs an emotional frenzy:
“It’s a woman’s world, so to speak/ P***y you sour/ Never givin’ credit where it’s due/’cause you don’t like p***y in power/Venom/Venom.
Little Simz, Venom, and Feminism
Wherever this song is posted on Youtube, the comments section is littered with women asserting themselves against misogyny and gender-based oppression. Shame gives way to pride as millions of women recite the song lyrics as a pledge of allegiance to themselves. On Tiktok, the song inspired two prominent trends:
- Healing or educational experiences of the female gender performed as skits
- A permanent tattoo
Venom: The trend, the movement.
Most of the “Venom” videos follow a call and response format native to both Nigerian and African American culture, which are interchangeable in this hip-hop exchange. TikTok content creators lip-sync the aforementioned song lyrics in the skits as if relaying a lesson, expression, or confession. The creator then goes from being the speaker to being the intended audience, responding in the affirmative by lip-syncing the word “Venom” back to him or herself. If it sounds complicated, have a look here: Venom by little simz TikTok
Venom = Women
The Venom tattoo is an artistic spin on each letter in the word. Venom is a poisonous substance that snakes and spiders have that kills when they feel threatened. The word venom is written in a way that makes the word ‘Venom’ say ‘Women’ when you look at it upside down. A clever illusion and a powerful statement. For this trend, people get the tattoo, play the music, and show it off. A less permanent dedication is written on mugs and t-shirts or as make you strewn across a body part. Poison is venom, venom = women.