Beyonce’s Cultural Impact


Cameron Dudzinski writes about the cultural impact that Beyonce has had on the industry

Cameron Dudzinski, Staff Writer

In her youth, Beyoncé Knowles was a very shy and introverted kid, so her parents signed her up for a dance class when she was seven to allow her to connect with others. The first time her parents saw her perform, they knew she had hidden potential.

Beyoncé enrolled in Parker Elementary School, a music-oriented school in Houston, where she performed in the school choir. She then attended the High School for the Performing and Visual Arts and Alief Elsik High School where she trained her skills.

Before Destiny’s Child received its name and recognition, the singer and rapper Roberson met Beyoncé at an audition for a girl group. However, after touring for five years, the trio (Beyoncé, Kelly Rowland and Michelle Williams) all planned to disband the group to pursue different interests. 

Beyoncé then made her acting debut in 2001, getting a lead role in Carmen: A Hip Hopera which led to several more acting opportunities for her. These roles and more reflect her many talents and even attributed to the past of black history in music and film. Beyoncé made many film appearances in iconic black roles such as Deena from Dreamgirls and Etta James in Cadillac Records.

She then kicked off her solo career with her debut album Dangerously In Love, featuring her future spouse Jay-Z. The album featured many genres of music and showed off her musical variety. This debut album broke records and won the Grammy Award for Best Contemporary R&B Album and the Soul Train Music Award for Best R&B/Soul Album – Female. 

From 1999 to the present, Beyoncé has continued to receive nominations and awards for her performances. Achieving Grammy Awards’ Best Urban Contemporary for Everything Is Love, Lemonade and record and song of the year in Formation. Beyoncé is the most Grammy-nominated female artist in history and has received at least one Grammy nomination every year except 2003 since 1999. 

Beyoncé implements messages to the black community through her various works like her release of Formation. Not only did the music video and song cover female empowerment but also covered the “Black Lives Matter” movement. Her release of Lemonade highlighted the personal struggles of the artist herself and black women throughout history.

She then released a documentary named “Homecoming on Netflix,” also with a release of a surprise album with her feature as the first black woman to headline for the Coachella Festival. However, the documentary highlighted much more than the festival. She quoted and used audio from many famous leaders like Malcolm X and famous authors like Toni Morrison and Maya Angelou as a means to empower the black community and provide awareness of their struggle for equality.

“Homecoming’s” real message stood as a celebration of African American culture with education, specifically Historically Black Colleges and Universities. “Homecoming” displayed the beauty of black culture and gave the chance for the black community to celebrate the need for black education in a country where it has not been a focus.

Beyoncé also made her collage “This is Black History ” honoring black icons that don’t receive coverage in media and history for Black History Month. Her reason for the collage was to not only recognize and celebrate black history with famous icons but to also bring up people who are building the future of black history in America. Her message for this piece wasn’t to celebrate the past but to celebrate the future of the black community.

While we know her as an icon for pop and music, Beyoncé is truly an advocate for the advancement of the black community in America. The platform she built with her countless wins and appearances is used rightfully as a way for her to spread her messages of equality and strength. She invests a large majority of money into giving back to her community and the various charities and causes she’s invested in. Beyoncé uses her music to shed light on serious topics, self-empowerment and inspire hope for her fans and community.