“I’m going to keep on running because a winner don’t quit on themselves.”
On Saturday, Beyoncé dropped her latest visual album to support her new 12-track record, Lemonade. The narrative arc follows a form of the Kübler-Ross model. Her journey from isolation to community and anger to redemption is sorted into chapters: Intuition, Denial, Apathy, Reformation, Forgiveness, Hope, and Redemption.
During the Redemption phase of the video, Jay Z’s grandmother Hattie — on stage at her 90th birthday — shares with the audience, “I had my ups and downs, but I always find the inner strength to pull myself up. I was served lemons, but I made lemonade.”
Whether Beyoncé was addressing her parents’ problems, her personal journey, or a multigenerational tension with society, one thing was certain: she’s discovered a fiercerecipe for Lemonade. Beyoncé’s sixth album is an ode to battling hardship, withstanding adversity, and triumphing over tragedy. It is a celebration of life, self-realization, and empowerment. As Beyoncé tells us in her video:
Take one pint of water, add a half pound of sugar, the juice of eight lemons, the zest of half a lemon. Pour the water from one jug then into the other several times. Strain through a clean napkin.
Grandmother, the alchemist, you spun gold out of this hard life, conjured beauty from the things left behind. Found healing where it did not live. Discovered the antidote in your own kit. Broke the curse with your own two hands. You passed these instructions down to your daughter who then passed it down to her daughter.