Madonna speaks out about treatment of 'women past the age of 45' and it's the feminist statement we all need to hear

Madonna has responded to the backlash over her appearance at the Grammys 2023 with an unapologetic message about misogyny and ageism

Madonna condemns treatment of 'women past the age of 45' after Grammys 2023 backlash
(Image credit: Getty)

Madonna has condemned critics who shamed her appearance at the Grammy Awards 2023 with a powerful statement about ageism and misogyny, and it's the feminist truth we all need to hear. 

The American popstar made headlines this week with her attendance at the iconic music awards in Los Angeles on Sunday, after she graced the stage to introduce Sam Smith and Kim Petras ahead of their showstopping ‘Unholy’ duet. 

The exciting moment saw Madonna, 64, presenting the first transwoman to ever perform at the Grammys, an honor that she later celebrated as ‘historic’ on her social media. 

It was the Like A Virgin singer’s face, however, that quickly became the subject of online scrutiny, as numerous people flocked to the Internet to pass judgment on her image. One of the main criticisms was that Madonna wasn't ‘aging gracefully’, while others made accusations that she had undergone too much plastic surgery and was no longer recognizable. 


(Image credit: Getty)

The Material Girl singer has since addressed the backlash, taking to Instagram on Tuesday to share a powerful message on the treatment of women in society. 

“Once again I am caught in the glare of ageism and misogyny that permeates the world we live in,” Madonna wrote. “A world that refuses to celebrate women past the age of 45 and feels the need to punish her if she continues to be strong-willed, hard-working and adventurous.” 

The 80s icon went on to remind folks that she has “never apologized” for her creative choices or looks despite being “degraded by the media” since the start of her career. 

“I understand that this is all a test and I am happy to do the trailblazing so that all the women behind me can have an easier time in the years to come,” she added, before punctuating her inspiring message with a Beyonce quote: “You-won’t break my soul.” Elsewhere in the post, Madonna chastised those who ignored her speech of gratitude for "the fearlessness of artists like Sam and Kim" in favor of focusing on her image. 

"Many people chose to only talk about close-up photos of me taken with a long lens camera by a press photographer that would distort anyone’s face!!" 

"I look forward to many more years of subversive behavior - pushing boundaries - Standing up to the patriarchy -and Most of all enjoying my life," she concluded. “Bow down bitches." 

Madonna's post was inundated with praise from her famous followers, many of whom applauded the US entertainer's strong words. 

"Everything you said 👏👏👏👏👏," commented English presenter and model, Katie Piper. 

"What an honor and a blessing it is to be in your presence. You are such a force and I have so much love and respect for you," American DJ, Honey Dijon wrote. 

Emma Dooney
Lifestyle News Writer

Hailing from the lovely city of Dublin, Emma mainly covers the Royal Family and the entertainment world, as well as the occasional health and wellness feature. Always up for a good conversation, she has a passion for interviewing everyone from A-list celebrities to the local GP - or just about anyone who will chat to her, really.

Emma holds an MA in International Journalism from City, University of London, and a BA in English Literature from Trinity College Dublin.