8:24am PT by Taylor Weatherby, Billboard
Lena Dunham: Justin Bieber's 'What Do You Mean?' Reinforces Rape Culture
Justin Bieber's new single, "What Do You Mean?" received plenty of hype before its Aug. 28 release, and now that the song is out, it's getting even more attention. One person who isn't so hot on the new track, though, is Lena Dunham.
The actress subtweeted her discomfort with the tune's lyrics on Monday, suggesting that "What Do You Mean?" alludes to rape culture and asking to discontinue the release of problematic songs like it.
Let's do away with pop songs where a girl nods yes when she means no and vice versa, k?
— Lena Dunham (@lenadunham) August 31, 2015
Dunham is referring to the song's chorus, in which Bieber sings, "What do you mean? / When you nod your head yes / But you wanna say no / What do you mean?"
Although the official video for the single shows Bieber getting a bit racy with a girl in a bedroom, the lyrics to "What Do You Mean?" are more about general relationship confusion than sexual consent. As Dunham pointed out, the beginning of the chorus does sound a bit controversial, but other lines, such as "You’re overprotective when I’m leaving / Trying to compromise, but I can’t win," tell more of miscommunication than anything else.
Prior to the song's release, Bieber explained the track's meaning himself. "Girls are often just flip-floppy,” Bieber told Ryan Seacrest. “They say something, and they mean something else. So … what do you mean? I don’t really know, that’s why I’m asking.”
Dunham later noted on Instagram, "How could anyone think I have an issue with Bieber?"
A photo posted by Lena Dunham (@lenadunham) on
This article originally appeared on Billboard.com.