Behind the Violent Meaning of “DAUGHTER” by Beyoncé

In many ways, “Daughter” (usually stylized in capital letters) sees Beyoncé pick up where she left off on Lemonade, her 2016 blockbuster album. She takes on infidelity with anger leading her actions. It’s the kind of vindictiveness that she harnessed in that earlier work.

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Moreover, this song falls in line with classic country murder ballads, adding something innate to her exploration of the genre. In her tale, it’s her father’s temperament that is the onus behind her own. Uncover the meaning behind this track, below.

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Behind the Meaning

Your body laid out on these filthy floors
Your bloodstains on my custom coutures
Bathroom attendant let me right in
She was a big fan

Beyoncé plays a character in this song. In the opening lines, she sings about a bloody body, which we later find out is a product of her own doing. Now I ripped your dress and you’re all black and blue / Look what you made me do, she sings.

They keep sayin’ that I ain’t nothin’ like my father
But I’m the furthest thing from choir boys and altars
If you cross me, I’m just like my father
I am colder than Titanic water

In the chorus, she gets into the pipeline from her father’s anger to her own. When crossed, Beyoncé says she’s not afraid to fight dirty–after all, she is her father’s daughter. I am colder than Titanic water, she sings with a bite in her voice.

Later on in the song, Beyoncé switches her focus from someone in a dress to a man trying to hold his breath. The connection between the two things can only lead to one conclusion: infidelity.

It’s a topic Beyoncé has explored almost ad nauseam. The entirety of Lemonade is about that betrayal. It seems it’s still something that plays on her mind–particularly the violent streak that comes out when she thinks too hard on it.

Help me, Lord, from these fantasies in my head
They ain’t ever been safe ones
I don’t fellowship with these fake ones
So let’s travel to white chapels and sing hymns

(Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images for The Recording Academy)

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