SWEET LITTLE SIXTEEN * CHUCK BERRY * LONDON 8585 * UK
Chuck singing about his favorite subject. . . . . Rock and Roll. It's a sobering thought that, innocent or not, a modern day Chuck couldn't survive with such sentiments concerning a girl of sixteen. Of course things were different - ideologically - back in 1958, when he wrote and sung this; then, in many other mainstream songs, as in all other areas where the subject arose, songs of this character was the norm. The whole subject of the 'age of consent' (the age at which people of various sexualities can legally have sex) is fraught with problems; worldwide the age of consent differs widely, and, if we just stick to heterosexual relationships, although the average age is sixteen, the gap from country to country can be as wide as seven years. And while, in the West, as would be expected, much of the moral debate on the subject is religious, the interests of Neo Liberal politics and capitalism are also very much involved. There is certainly a whiff of something foul in that as the age consent of females rises in places like America and Britain, so their sexploitation/sexulisation lowers in 'education', the media, and other more 'up front' areas of corporate interest like the fashion industry and advertising.
RETURN TO THE MEN WITH RHYTHM AND BLUES PAGE