The 7 Best Quotes From Madonna’s Essay In Harper’s Bazaar

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Everyone is talking about Madonna‘s new essay in the November issue of Harper’s Bazaar, and not just because she actually wrote it herself.  No, it seems there’s a lot more to Madonna than meets the eye or gets scrawled across a tabloid headline.  We all know she’s one of the baddest bitches in the music industry (I regretted using that phrase almost immediately, but deal with it anyway) and I also don’t know a single human being who didn’t love her portrayal of “All the Way Mae” in A League of Their Own.  Sure, she’s easy to make fun of sometimes because of her penchant for sweaty boob pics, new grill, and the slow decline of her shock value.  But at the core of it all, she’s an intelligent woman who’s lived and learned a lifetime of lessons.  There’s a reason why pop stars have been ripping off her songs and style for years now: she’s that awesome.

Here are the 7 best quotes from her essay:

1. On coming to New York for the first time at age 20:
“New York wasn’t everything I thought it would be. It did not welcome me with open arms. The first year, I was held up at gunpoint. Raped on the roof of a building I was dragged up to with a knife in my back, and had my apartment broken into three times. I don’t know why; I had nothing of value after they took my radio the first time.”

2. On how she survived before she hit it big:
“Trying to be a professional dancer, paying my rent by posing nude for art classes, staring at people staring at me naked. Daring them to think of me as anything but a form they were trying to capture with their pencils and charcoal. I was defiant. Hell-bent on surviving. On making it. But it was hard and it was lonely, and I had to dare myself every day to keep going.”

3. On her “shocking” style and religious beliefs during the early days of her pop career:
“When you’re 25, it’s a little bit easier to be daring, especially if you are a pop star, because eccentric behavior is expected from you. By then I was shaving under my arms, but I was also wearing as many crucifixes around my neck as I could carry, and telling people in interviews that I did it because I thought Jesus was sexy. Well, he was sexy to me, but I also said it to be provocative. I have a funny relationship with religion. I’m a big believer in ritualistic behavior as long as it doesn’t hurt anybody. But I’m not a big fan of rules.”

4. On reaching a turning-point at age 35:
“I was divorced and looking for love in all the wrong places. I decided that I needed to be more than a girl with gold teeth and gangster boyfriends. More than a sexual provocateur imploring girls not to go for second-best baby. I began to search for meaning and a real sense of purpose in life.”

5. On her marriage to Guy Richie:
“When I was 45, I was married again, with two children and living in England. I consider moving to a foreign country to be a very daring act. It wasn’t easy for me. Just because we speak the same language doesn’t mean we speak the same language. I didn’t understand that there was still a class system. I didn’t understand pub culture. I didn’t understand that being openly ambitious was frowned upon. Once again I felt alone.”

6. On adopting her youngest two children:
“This was an eye-opening experience. A real low point in my life. I could get my head around people giving me a hard time for simulating masturbation onstage or publishing my Sex book, even kissing Britney Spears at an awards show, but trying to save a child’s life was not something I thought I would be punished for.”

7. On life lessons:
“One of the many things I learned from all of this: If you aren’t willing to fight for what you believe in, then don’t even enter the ring.”

(Photo: WENN)

You can reach this post's author, Cassandra Hough, on twitter.
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