Photo: Medium
Top 20 best feminist anthems. Photo: Medium

Feminist anthems call in all shapes and sizes, from the riot grrrl hard-hitters to pop radio chart-toppers. The lyrics don't have to read like Judith Butler, but it doesn't hurt when they do get into the nitty-gritty of womanhood.

In celebration of empowering women, KnowInsiders has put together 20 feminist anthems, below.

1. "Run the World (Girls)" by Beyoncé

This is an obvious choice. Queen Bey's powerful, high-energy anthem is everything, from a crowd favorite to a straight-up battle cry, according to Harper's Bazaar.

2. "Q.U.E.E.N." by Janelle Monáe and Erykah Badu

This power duo shows it's okay to be provocative, vulgar and seductive in the face of judgment on this funky collab, which ends on a powerful rap from Monáe on equality.

3. "Bad Girls" by M.I.A

M.I.A.'s hypnotic slogan, "Live fast, die young/ Bad girls do it well," came as a form of support for the Women To Drive movement in Saudi Arabia. Until just recently in Sept. of 2017, women were forbidden to drive motorized vehicles. "Bad Girls" and its car stunt-filled visuals predate the law change by five years, Billboard cites.

4. “Amigas Cheetahs” by The Cheetah Girls

Photo: Teen Vogue
Photo: Teen Vogue

Disney Channel was quite ahead of itself when it aired the girl-power-packed film The Cheetah Girls. The finale to the film’s sequel, The Cheetah Girls 2, upped the ante when the band enlisted the woman who was pitted against them for the entire movie to join them on stage to sing -- in both English and Spanish -- about sticking up for one another.

5. "No Body, No Crime" by Taylor Swift featuring Haim

Is this song about a woman killing her friend's husband after he cheated? Yes. Does it also show the power that women have when they are determined to do something (especially when that something involves revenge)? Also yes.

6. “Independent Women, Pt. 1,” by Destiny’s Child

This song was originally released to promote Charlie’s Angels in 2000, but it’s still one of the greatest of all time. All the women who is independent put this song on repeat, said Cosmopolitan.

**Read more: Happy Women’s Day: Meaningful Quotes, Best Wishes and Sweet Messages!

7. “Confident,” by Demi Lovato

Photo: SoundCloud
Photo: SoundCloud

Here, Demi Lovato asks, “What’s wrong with being confident?” The answer is nothing, Demi. Absolutely nothing is wrong with being confident.

8. "Woman" by Kesha feat. The Dap-Kings Horns

Kesha has become a voice for female empowerment and fighting sexual harassment through music (like her moving Grammys set) ever since coming back from a grueling legal battle with Dr. Luke. On this feel-good track, the singer shamelessly embraces being "a motherf*cking woman."

9. “Woman” by Kesha

Aside from all the other reasons to be absolutely stoked on Kesha’s most recent album Rainbow, which marked her long-awaited return to music-making, “Woman” is the icing on the cake, ‘cause she “run this shit, baby.”

10. “The Future is Female” by Madame Gandhi (TT the Artist Club Remix featuring UNIIQU3)

This super recent track is packed with cold hard facts, like “We have to value girls more than their looks/ The biggest threat is a girl with a book.” Plus, the artist’s main goal in performing is to “make gender equality culturally even more relevant,” and that’s about as feminist as a goal can get.

11. "Bad Reputation" by Joan Jett & the Blackhearts

Photo: Amazon
Photo: Amazon

Rock 'n' roll queen Joan Jett makes it okay to live your life to the fullest and not give a damn about what other people think.

12. “I Am Her” by Shea Diamond

Shea Diamond has been a trailblazer for trans-women in the music industry. “I Am Her” starts with a bold statement, “If you had to wear my shoes, you’d probably take them off too.” The NYC-based singer-songwriter packed the track with strong lyrics, singing “Your ignorance leaves a hell of a stench/ The aroma lingers on generations unknown.”

13. “Just a Girl” by No Doubt

Iconic ska-punk band No Doubt had Gwen Stefani kicking ass since the very start. “Just a Girl” proves that she’s anything but a demure stereotype. “Oh I'm just a girl, all pretty and petite/ So don't let me have any rights/ Oh...I've had it up to here!”

14. “Girl on Fire,” by Alicia Keys

Screaming “Girl on Fire,” by Alicia Keys, at the top of your lungs in the car with your best friends is basically a rite of passage. It’s somehow soothing and empowering at the same time.

15. “Mother’s Daughter” by Miley Cyrus

Shout-out to Mama Cyrus for inspiring this Miley track that’s all about reclaiming your power. The lyric “Don’t f*ck with my freedom, I came up to get me some” is about to be your new mantra.

16. “God Is a Woman” by Ariana Grande

Photo: Youtube
Photo: Youtube

Listen, if Ariana Grande says God is a woman, then that must be the truth. This song will have you embracing your inner goddess just like Ari does in the music video.

17. “Rare” by Selena Gomez

After a far-too-long hiatus, Selena Gomez dropped a new album and nailed the whole “I don’t need a guy to be happy” vibe, especially with this song about knowing she is rare and deserves to be treated as such.

18. "Born This Way" by Lady Gaga

With this iconic intersectional track, Gaga inspires individuals from the LGBTQ community and from diverse backgrounds to live their best lives.

Sure, there are men out there who have put out good music (and by men, we mean Harry Styles, obviously), but nothing can compare to a song written by a woman, for woman, with the sole purpose of spreading the message of feminism. In fact, these songs will even serve as your personal hype-woman when you need one most—they're that good.

The Spice Girls may have been some of the first to do it, but they're far from the last. This list includes some Beyoncé (that's a given), as well as hits from Ariana Grande, Lizzo, and Taylor Swift. These songs are meant to be played loud, whether that means turning up the volume on your headphones or blasting them through your car speakers. Women really can do anything, but sometimes, we just need a really good song to remind us of that.

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