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Annie Lennox on being mistaken for a lesbian: 'I think intelligent heterosexual women are challenging for heterosexual men'

The musician found wrong aspersions about her sexuality “weird”

Thursday 30 October 2014 12:25 GMT

Annie Lennox’s androgynous aesthetic led many in the Eighties to question her sexuality.

The singer and philanthropist is married to South African gynaecologist Dr Mitch Besser and has two daughters, Tali and Lola, from her previous marriage to record and film producer Uri Fruchtmann.

She has long fought for LGBT rights and has a firm gay following, yet describes wrong aspersions about her sexuality as “weird”.

“It was weird because I’m not and never have been,” she told the Metro. “I thought, ‘Oh that’s really strange. Is that how people see me? Does that mean I’m not attractive to men?’ I think intelligent heterosexual women are challenging for heterosexual men.”

The singer also called against women not to act stupidly to appease men.

“You mean dumbing down their intelligence? I’m baffled by that,” she said. “I don’t think a woman has to be strident to prove that she’s as good as a man or to be competitive with men, but I also don’t think women have to use their sexuality or their seductiveness to always flirt and to be on top and be manipulative. That is so unattractive.”

Lennox has previously sided with Sinead O’Connor over the sexualisation of young women in music, describing the issue as “highly stylised pornography with musical accompaniment”.

Now she likens overly sexualised performances to “self-molestation”.

“Things have evolved so far that some have gone backwards,” she said. “The artists who are aware their audience are seven-year-olds – what is that about? It’s sick. It’s not powerful. It’s not feminism. It’s not about empowerment. It’s a devaluation of women, to be frank. It’s like self-molestation. It just makes me embarrassed.”

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