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Do male songwriters taint the work of artists like Miley Cyrus?

Published: Monday, Sept. 30 2013 9:30 a.m. MDT

Miley Cyrus and her sister Brandi Cyrus attend the MTV Video Music Awards on Thursday, Sept. 6, 2012, in Los Angeles.  (AP, Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision) Miley Cyrus and her sister Brandi Cyrus attend the MTV Video Music Awards on Thursday, Sept. 6, 2012, in Los Angeles. (AP, Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision)

During the past several months, Miley Cyrus has generated a steady stream of headlines for both her aberrant behavior and controversial lyrics.

A recent Rolling Stone cover story by Josh Eells suggested that hubbub is the fruit of conscious creative decisions from the 20-year-old Cyrus (“She wants very much to be taken seriously as an artist, not just in the musical sense, but overall”).

However, late last week USA Today columnist Mark Joseph offered a very different diagnosis for the ongoing sexualization of Cyrus’ art.

Joseph wrote, “Many, if not most, of the sexually charged female pop anthems of recent decades were based on the wishful thinking of male songwriters who persuaded female singers to express their desires, in the process confusing millions of members of the opposite sex about how women really view sexuality.

“One need only have watched television or read a newspaper this month to have seen the dynamic at work. Amidst Miley Cyrus' sexual coming out, her record-smashing single ‘Wrecking Ball’ shot to the top of the charts. While a woman is credited as one of the writers, so are four men.”

FILE - This Aug. 25, 2013 file photo shows singer Miley Cyrus at the MTV Video Music Awards in the Brooklyn borough of New York.  Cyrus says in an interview clip that she doesn’t listen to the negative comments regarding her performance on the MTV Video Music Awards. The pop star says she felt she and Robin Thicke were making history with the risque performance of their hits “We Can’t Stop” and “Blurred Lines.” The comments were Cyrus’ first since the Aug. 25 show. The clip was recorded last week and posted Tuesday morning on MTV’s website. Cyrus compares the performance to that of Madonna and Britney Spears, who once kissed on air.  (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP, File) (Evan Agostini, Evan Agostini/Invision/AP) FILE - This Aug. 25, 2013 file photo shows singer Miley Cyrus at the MTV Video Music Awards in the Brooklyn borough of New York. Cyrus says in an interview clip that she doesn’t listen to the negative comments regarding her performance on the MTV Video Music Awards. The pop star says she felt she and Robin Thicke were making history with the risque performance of their hits “We Can’t Stop” and “Blurred Lines.” The comments were Cyrus’ first since the Aug. 25 show. The clip was recorded last week and posted Tuesday morning on MTV’s website. Cyrus compares the performance to that of Madonna and Britney Spears, who once kissed on air. (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP, File) (Evan Agostini, Evan Agostini/Invision/AP)

Email: jaskar@desnews.com

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