Most young musicians today prefer to sing about cars, women and money, but for 22-year-old Caylah- a female Madagascan singer- music is the best way to inspire and encourage girls and single mothers who are subjected to abuse and discrimination every day.
Caylah uses her music as therapy for young single mothers in Madagascar by encouraging them to stay strong despite the societal prejudice, according to Africa News.
I create jokes on prostitution for instance by saying, there is no bad job. I am a prostitute and I accept it. We feel the joy of living or strength to say despite what happened to me, I will remain a strong woman, Caylah said.
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Majority of Caylah’s songs are critical of many societal injustices, particularly bad politics and gender inequality. She also addresses important socioeconomic issues such as gender-based violence and climate change.
“The message I want to pass across is that it is not because I am a woman considered in Malagasy as “Fanaka malemy” or soft object that you should trample on me or beat me,” she said.
The controversial singer has been making headlines on the internet after she released a protest song titled “Madagascar” a few months ago.
In the song, Caylah openly criticizes the government, which has been facing moments of turbulence over the years.
Political Turbulence in Madagascar
Just a few months ago, the Madagascan Prime Minister Jean Ravelonarivo resigned from his post after he reportedly differed with President Hery Rajaonarimampianina over development policies.
Since gaining independence from France in 1960, Madagascar has often experienced episodes of serious political instability, including disputed elections, political assassinations, and military coups.
In 1991, over 100,000 civil servants marched to the Madagascan presidential palace demanding better working environment, however security guards manning the gates responded with live bullets and grenades, leaving dozens wounded.
In 2003, a senior Madagascan military official was charged with attempted coup against President Ravalomanana. In 2009, dozens of people died after police opened fire on opposition demonstrators in Antananarivo- Madagascar’s capital.