By Hayden Wright
This week, Ariana Grande revealed that her next album would be titled Dangerous Woman instead of Moonlight. Last night, she shared a photo on Instagram that seems to reveal the source of that provocative title: Egyptian feminist writer Nawal El Saadawi.
“They said, ‘You are a savage and dangerous woman.’ I am speaking the truth. And the truth is savage and dangerous,” the photo is captioned and attributed to Saadawi.
The quote comes from the writer’s 1975 novel, Woman at Point Zero, about a female protagonist who endures arranged marriage, genital mutilation, forced prostitution and ultimately murders her captor. It’s considered a landmark text depicting women in Islam.
Grande herself has history with religion and social progress: She admitted to leaving the Catholic Church in 2014 because she felt uncomfortable with its rejection of her gay brother, Frankie. She’s since turned to Kabbalah, the area of Jewish mysticism favored by other musicians like Madonna.
“When my brother was told that God didn’t love him, I was like, ‘Okay, that’s not cool,’” she told the Sunday Telegraph. “They were building a Kabbalah centre in Florida so we both checked it out and really had a connection with it.”