Do you have a plan to vote?

Let us tell you the information you need to register and cast a ballot in D.C.

[youtube:v=psvCUWzecGo]

In nearly a year of chronicling songs about rape here on the Sexist, I’ve yet to profile one of the most well-known songs about rape. Or is it about rape? Either way, this track name-checks the word “rape”  about a bajillion times:

Date Rape Anthem: Nirvana‘s “Rape Me”

Relevant Lyrics: Let’s take a look at all of them, shall we?

Rape me / Rape me, my friend Rape me / Rape me again

I’m not the only one  (x4)

Hate me / Do it and do it again Waste me / Rape me, my friend

I’m not the only one (x4)

My favorite inside source I’ll kiss your open sores I appreciate your concern You’re gonna stink and burn

Rape me / Rape me, my friend Rape me / Rape me, again

I’m not the only one (x4)

Rape me! (x a lot)

So, What Do We Do With This One: Is “Rape Me” a Randian invitation to rough sex? The cry of a demoralized rock star who felt he had been “raped” by a backstabbing media source? Or a revenge anthem about a rapist getting raped himself? Fans are torn (OK, nobody believes the Ayn Rand thing).

Official sources claim that it is a song about rape—-at least on a literal level. According to Wikipedia, Kurt Cobain unpacked the song in Spin Magazine in 1993: “It’s like she’s saying, ‘Rape me, go ahead, rape me, beat me. You’ll never kill me. I’ll survive this and I’m gonna fucking rape you one of these days and you won’t even know it.”

Tori Amos provided a similar interpretation of the song to New Musical Express in 1994. “I spoke publicly about that because I thought it was very clear what it was about. It was like ‘Go on, hit me! Rape me! You cross this line, motherfucker, and I’ll kill you…you’ll never break my spirit.’ It’s a defiant song. But the scariest thing to a rape victim are the words ‘rape me’. When I first heard it I broke out in a cold sweat, but when you get over that you realize he’s turning it back on people.”

So, is it a song about the horrors of rape? Or is it rather about how Cobain’s experience with the media is really a lot like the horrors of rape? One of these things is not like the other . . .