Billie Eilish is taking on body shaming with a new short video that shows her stripping down to question the way society polices people’s physical appearance.
The video, released Tuesday night, has already been viewed more than 3.7 million times. Titled “Not My Responsibility,” it shows Eilish standing in the dark with her signature long nails unzipping the zipper on a baggy black hooded jacket.
As the spoken word video progresses, she discusses the way people talk about her body to shame her and others, and she muses if people would like her to be softer, quieter, weaker, or taller.
“Would you like me to be quiet? Do my shoulders provoke you?” she asks as she stands in the soft lighting in a black tank top.
Toward the end of the clip, she moves to remove her shirt and she sinks into an inky liquid.
“If I wear what is comfortable, I am not a woman,” she says. “If I shed the layers, I’m a slut. Though you’ve never seen my body, you still judge it and judge me for it. Why? We make assumptions about people based on their size. We decide who they are, we decide what they’re worth.”
At the conclusion, she sinks under the viscous liquid and questions her role in how she is perceived.
“If I wear more, if I wear less, who decides what that makes me? What that means? Is my value based only on your perception? Or is your opinion of me not my responsibility?” she concludes as she disappears.
Eilish has been both praised and criticized for her sense of fashion, which typically features baggy, shapeless clothing that bucks against the trend of female performers wearing revealing, tight clothing as they perform.
But fans like her style enough that she recently teamed up with clothing brand Uniqlo and Japanese artist and director Takashi Murakami to create a clothing line.
Eilish has said in the past that she used to hate her body and wore baggy clothes, not as a fashion statement, but because she didn’t want to see her body. She pushed against the idea that her way of dressing was a form of rebellion. These days, she says, she has gotten to a better place with her body.
The video was originally shown to fans at a concert in early March, but her worldwide tour was postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic.